7/13 UPDATE: A Northern California shelter with a federal government contract to house migrant children sent out a statement on Friday denying it housed children separated from parents at the U.S.-Mexico border.
BCFS sent a letter to the city of Fairfield claiming the facility “does not and has never housed children separated from their family.”
The letter comes three weeks after CBS13 reported the facility would not allow Rep. John Garamendi to tour the facility and that federal agencies were stonewalling him.
FAIRFIELD (CBS13) — CBS13 has learned more about one Fairfield facility that’s housing at least a dozen migrant children, including some separated from their families at the border.
The facility, run by a non-profit called BCFS has a website that touts 70 years of experience caring for at-risk populations, and partnerships with a number of government agencies.
A woman working on site referred CBS13’s questions to the U.S. Department of the Health and Human Services. Repeated calls to the agency were not returned.
“In our district, we need to know,” Rep. John Garamendi (D-Fairfield) said.
Garamendi, speaking from the U.S.-Mexico border, said he has worked to get details on the children housed in Fairfield and federal agencies are stonewalling him.
“We’ve been stonewalled by the refugee response organization specifically responsible for caring for these kids, little response from ICE and the Border Patrol,” Garamendi said.
Garamendi is scheduled to tour a Texas border detention facility Saturday.
The Trump administration has asked the Department of Defense to create space on military bases to house up to 20,000 children. A similar plan four years ago designated Travis Air Force Base in Fairfield as a possible site for a wave of unaccompanied youth crossing the border then. It was never used.
“I think if its on a military base, we have a much better chance of knowing who is there, having a much more organized situation rather than having these children spread out across dozens of cities all across the United States,” Garamendi said.
CBS News is reporting that children separated from their families who are still at the border have been reunited tonight.
For the children who have been transported to facilities across the country, like the one in Fairfield, the timeline and process for getting them back with their parents is still unknown.