You will be redirected to the page you want to view in  seconds.

Unaccompanied children could be housed at Maxwell

Jul. 24, 2014 - 06:00AM   |  
A Mexican boy looks at a member of the U.S. Border Patrol standing guard Tuesday on the border between El Paso in the United States and Ciudad Juarez in Mexico. (Jesus Alcazar / AFP via Getty Images)
  • Filed Under

Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama, is now joining several other military bases as possible locations to house unaccompanied Central American minors, according to the state’s governor’s office.

Officials with the Defense and Health and Human Services departments notified Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley that Maxwell is being considered as a location to shelter some of the surging number of unaccompanied minors who have been caught illegally crossing the border, said Yasamie August, a spokeswoman for the governor’s office.

The Recruit Housing and Training facility at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland already is being used to house 1,820 children ages 12 to 17. Additional children are being held at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, and Naval Base Ventura County, California. The Defense Department has said Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington, also is being considered for housing the children.

HHS officials have already visited Lewis-McChord and are assessing the possibility of sending the children to the base. Officials have not yet visited Maxwell, Defense Department spokesman Lt. Col. Thomas Crosson said. Currently no other Air Force bases are in consideration, he said.

The Maxwell announcement comes the same week that Bentley joined five other governors in sending a letter to President Obama expressing concern about the administration’s handling of the situation, and about the potential that states might be forced to pay for the education, social services and health care of the children.

“We are concerned that the failure to return the unaccompanied children will send a message that will encourage a much larger movement towards our southern border,” the July 22 letter states. “We fear that this will put a significant number of children at risk of abuse and neglect on their journey to the United States.”

More than 57,000 children have crossed the border since October, according to the letter, and there are reports that more than 90,000 children could make the journey.

“With no end in sight, we need to have a plan to deal with this crisis in a humanitarian and practical way,” according to the letter, which was also signed by Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin, Gov. Sam Brownback of Kansas, Gov. Pat McCrory of North Carolina, Gov. Tom Corbett of Pennsylvania and Gov. Gary Herbert of Utah.

Answers by RallyPoint

Join trending discussions in the military's #1 professional community. See what members like yourself have to say from across the DoD.

More In News

Start your day with a roundup of top defense news.

VA Home Loan

Search By:

Product Options:
Zip Code:

News for your in-box

Sign up now for free Military Times E-Reports. Choose from Money and Education. Subscribers: log in for premium e-newsletters.

This Week's Army Times

This Week's Army Times

CrossFit vs. unit PT
Troops will do the training plans in a $2.5 million study

Subscribe for Print or Digital delivery today!

MilitaryTimes Green Trusted Classifieds Looking to buy, sell and connect on Military Times?
Browse expanded listings across hundreds of military installations.
Faces of valorHonoring those who fought and died in Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.
hall of valorThe Hall of Valor is a searchable database of valor award citations collected by Doug Sterner, a Vietnam veteran and Military Times contributing editor, and by Military Times staff.

All you need to know about your military benefits.

Benefits handbook

Guard & Reserve All you need to know about the Guard & Reserve.

guard and reserve handbook