The number of migrant children held in a facility in San Antonio, Texas has nearly tripled in less than two weeks, as state and federal agencies have received complaints of abuse taking place there.
On March 29, 500 male children between the ages of 13 and 17 were transferred to the Freeman Expo Center. By Monday, that number had skyrocketed to 1,370, officials said, according to local station KSAT.
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“Too many people coming in. Not enough people going out,” said Rep. Henry Cuellar, D-Texas. “Right now we are facing a humanitarian crisis and I use the word crisis,” he added.
Meanwhile, Governor Greg Abbott is calling on President Biden to close the facility after the Department of Health and Human Services and the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services receive complaints about child abuse taking place there. Abbott said this included allegations of sexual assault, failure to separate children infected with COVID-19 from others, children not eating and an insufficient number of staff.
“In short, this facility is a health and safety nightmare. The Biden administration is now leading the abuse of children,” Abbott told reporters.
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The governor said the current situation is “a by-product of President Biden’s open borders policy” and that the government has not planned for these consequences.
Children in the facility are supposed to be either released to a sponsor or transferred to one of the Department of Health and Human Services’ long-term shelters.
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The governor called on the Texas Department of Public Safety and the Texas Rangers to immediately investigate the child abuse allegations.
Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas is expected to visit two border towns in Texas on Thursday. According to KFOX 14, he will meet with local law enforcement officers in El Paso and McAllen.
Caitlin McFall and Brie Stimson of Fox News contributed to this report.