D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser announced that the city would not accept the idea of housing a facility for unaccompanied migrant children, joining other politicians in opposing the federal government’s suggestion, according to a report by the Washington Post.
In her statement on Tuesday, Bowser said that her city would not be “complicit in the inhumane practice of detaining migrant children in warehouses.”
The mayor’s remarks were in response to the federal contractor Dynamic Service Solution, which recently applied to open a temporary shelter for children in the District. The firm reportedly published advertisements, where it sought hiring individuals that will work with “unaccompanied alien” children in D.C.
The proposed center was planned to be home to migrant children that don’t have company from ages 12 to 17. Maryland-based Dynamic Service Solution, which would have operated the place, does not have any experience in running children-related facilities, according to Mother Jones.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services granted a total of $8.7 million contract to the company in 2017 for providing shelter to unaccompanied minors in the United States.
Politicians who are objecting to such a facility in D.C. state that they are not against welcoming immigrant children in the District, but to the system offered by the federal government.
Between October 2018 and July 2019, approximately 70,000 minors without company were detained at the border in the country’s southwest, the Washington Post reported, adding that the figure was 50,000 the previous year.
The “separation of families” policy towards migrants adopted by the Donald Trump administration has long been the target of intense criticism.