HHS Releases Videos of Immigration Detention Facilities as Dems Press for Change As a group of congressional Democrats visited shelters holding children separated from their parents suspected of illegal entry into the U.S., the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) defends its role, while releasing new videos of two facilities for unaccompanied kids.
“Congress gave HHS the responsibility to care for these children and teenagers, and we take this legal mandate very seriously,” Health and Human Services Deputy Secretary Eric Hargan said in a statement. “It is our hope that as members tour the facilities they will see the facilities for what they are intended to provide: safe and healthy environments for children and teenagers to reside until such time as they can be released to an appropriate sponsor, while their immigration cases are adjudicated.”
Nearly 2,000 children have been taken from their parents since Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the policy. Noting the children were “vulnerable to human trafficking, exploitation and abuse,” Hargan said, “The need for these facilities has grown over the last decade, in large part because of the flaws in our immigration system that draw many immigrants to try to cross our borders illegally.”