Immigration overload, inside the Nogales detention center - KMSP-TV

Immigration overload, inside the Nogales detention center

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NOGALES, Ariz. - The Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson said that the kids are not going to get a free path to citizenship. They will then be transferred to the Department of Health and Human Services who will decide if a relative in the US gets custody or if the children will be deported.

Meanwhile, journalists are being barred from going into the Nogales holding facility where thousands of children are being shipped.

FOX 10 spoke with a woman who went inside, and she likened conditions to that of an animal shelter.

"It felt like a dog pound," said Deedee Blase.

"It had a warehouse like, concrete, feel to it. When we walked in you saw cages with barbed wire fencing. There are two cages with boys and girls next to each other, and then there are 4-5 port-potties behind it," she said.

Deedee Blase, an immigration activist, recently toured the facility in Nogales with her fellow activists.

"They looked scared, and they looked tired, I think a shower could've helped along with clean clothes," said Blase.

She said many of the kids hadn't taken a shower in 10 days. Although portable showers and toilets were brought in, they were not being used by Border Patrol agents who needed to put up a wire fence around them.

"I see the morale is very depressing," she said.

She says the conditions in Nogales were better than a detention center in Texas. Photos released by Henry Cuellar, a Texas Congressman, show crowded and caged conditions. A more colorful scene took place at Port Hueneme in California. It is one of the long-term housing facilities where kids will end up as HHS officials figure out where the kids will go.

"The Secretary of Homeland Security said despite the message that is going out in Central America, kids who come here in the past few weeks will not get amnesty or a path to citizenship.

"I am not encouraging in any way shape or form illegal migration, that's the message," said Jeh Johnson.

"Illegal migration is not safe, illegal migration through the Texas border is not safe, a processing center is no place for your child," he said.

Some who are pro-immigration activists agree and want to spread that message.

"I mean this is a deathwish for a parent, I wouldn't do it. I have kids, and I wouldn't tell my kids to walk a scorching desert in the heat of summer. So the primary blame in my view is the parents," said Blase.

Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne sent a cease and desist letter to federal officials telling them to stop the transfer of undocumented immigrants to Arizona or he will file a lawsuit.
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