Arizona's longstanding immigration issues have become further complicated after more than 300 immigrant children were sent to the state’s detention center in Nogales. Over 1,000 children are expected to arrive at the detention center in the coming days, as the government responds to an influx of unaccompanied minors that recently made their way across the border in Texas.
Conditions at the facility — which is set up in a makeshift warehouse — have slowly been improving as the government has introduced amenities such as portable showers and restrooms. Of course, there are still obvious issues involving hygiene and other factors that arise from having so many young people in such close quarters.
“The conditions, without a doubt, are not the most optimal, not the best, but they are improving the quality of food and their opportunity to clean themselves, take showers, change clothes, etc.,” said José Joaquin Chacon, the El Salvador consul general in Tuscon, according to AZ Central.
The children at the facility come from El Salvador as well as other Central American countries, primarily Guatemala and Honduras. They were apprehended by border patrol in the Rio Grande Valley as thousands of children and families attempted to cross the border at the same time.
According to RT, the Nogales facility is being used as a “way station” where children can receive medical treatment and vaccinations before being flown to others stations in locations such as Ventura, California, Fort Sill, Oklahoma, and San Antonio, Texas. All of the children face deportation, although it is unclear how the various government agencies involved plan to respond.
The situation represents the United States’ growing issues with illegal immigration. President Obama has been one of the harshest leaders in history in terms of deportations, and such a large-scale migration involving so many children will be a test of his stance on the issue moving forward.