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For Detained Migrant Kids: Lice, No Toothpaste or Soap

Attorney: 'Worst conditions I have ever witnessed in several years of doing these inspections'
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 24, 2019 2:15 PM CDT
Migrant children wait for their father on the Mexican side of the Rio Bravo before crossing the US - Mexico border to surrender to the American authorities in El Paso, Saturday, June 15, 2019. Their parents...   (AP Photo/ Photo/Christian Torres)
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(Newser) – A series of reports in recent days describes miserable conditions for migrant children being held at a Border Patrol facility near El Paso, Texas. The reports are based on the accounts of attorneys who visited the facility in Clint to check on the conditions of the unaccompanied minors, ranging in age from infants to teenagers. "It's the worst conditions I have ever witnessed in several years of doing these inspections," one of the attorneys, Warren Binford, tells the PBS News Hour. The AP says that following the reports, the government pulled hundreds of children from the facility; about 30 remained as of Monday. The details of what apparently led to that:

  • The stench: The children have lice, and no soap or toothpaste, and toddlers have no diapers, reports the New York Times, which describes "a chaotic scene of sickness and filth." Children as young as 7 have been entrusted with caring for infants who are not related to them. “There is a stench,” says Elora Mukherjee, director of the Immigrants’ Rights Clinic at Columbia Law School, another of the visiting attorneys. “The overwhelming majority of children have not bathed since they crossed the border.”

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