HOUSTON – The first bus carrying migrant children arrived at a facility in north Houston Friday evening, Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee told KPRC 2.
Jackson Lee said there were dozens on board. The vehicle pulled into the building during the 6 p.m. as officers watched. However, the bus was then out of view of our camera.
Shortly before 8 p.m., the bus backed out and left the facility.
On Saturday, Jackson Lee said there are currently 300 unaccompanied minors at the girls-only facility.
“Children who are here are being provided an opportunity to connect with a family member, a parent and do it expeditiously,” said Jackson Lee.
The National Association of Christian Churches is serving as an emergency intake site with room for 500 children. The site will provide sleeping quarters, meals, toiletries, laundry and access to medical services.
The Department of Homeland Security is on-site, along with several other federal agencies to ensure the children are safe while kept at the facility. FEMA, for example, is providing food, clothes, and other essentials to the children when they arrive.
“The images that you’re seeing on the news where these human smugglers are dropping these children from these walls that are 12, 13, 14 feet, it’s a humanitarian crisis,” Congressman Troy Nehls told KPRC 2 on Saturday afternoon.
All children undergo a physical when arriving to ensure they are healthy and receive the proper care.
Congressman Nehls added that it’s not the children at the facility he’s worried about but rather the people sneaking into the country.
“They say there are a thousand getaways every day a thousand individuals that don’t go through the port of entry and wave the white flag because they have some sort of criminal history or background or they have been deported 1,2,3, 4 times,” Nehls said. “Those are the individuals we really need to be concerned about.”
Jackson Lee said more girls are on the way to the north Houston facility. It is unclear when they will arrive.
The process takes time because the children are coming from a combination of different facilities at the border, she said.