1,400 Immigrant Children To be Housed in Arizona Warehouse
Updated: Monday, June 9 2014, 08:08 AM CDT
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PHOENIX (AP) - Angry about the federal government sending from Texas to Arizona immigrants who are in the country illegally, Arizona officials say they are rushing federal supplies to a makeshift holding center in the southern part of the state that's housing hundreds of migrant children and is running low on the basics.
Gov. Jan Brewer's spokesman, Andrew Wilder, said Friday that conditions at the holding center are so dire that federal officials have asked the state to immediately ship the medical supplies to the center in Nogales.
A Homeland Security Department official told The Associated Press that children are sleeping on plastic cots but about 2,000 mattresses have been ordered, and portable toilets and showers have been brought to the holding center -- a warehouse that has not been used for detention in years.
The official, who who spoke on condition of anonymity because there was no authorization to discuss the matter publicly, said the Nogales holding center opened for children because the Department of Health and Human Services had nowhere to turn.
"They became so overwhelmed and haven't kept up with planning," the official said.
U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement has said the immigrants were mostly families from Central America fleeing extreme poverty and violence.
Wilder said a total of 432 unaccompanied minors detained in Texas arrived in Nogales on Friday, with 367 more expected both Saturday and Sunday.
The Homeland Security official said as many as 1,400 children are expected to be eventually brought to the warehouse, which has a capacity of about 1,500.
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