For now 1300--was 2300--children.
So why had they not been released? Why were they still being held at this for-profit prison?
Uh, release children to homes, Tom. Duh?
If you include ALL children at Homestead...?
Oooooo, so, *totally* not a child prison then. 🙄
*Is this true? Didn't they end funding to these 3 items a month ago?
You can donate to them, here:
That's a HUGE change from even a week ago, when there were children who'd been in CBP custody for WEEKS.
...I'd prefer it if they didn't try to keep *adding* beds so as to detain *more* kids.
@Rosa_DeLauro attempts to get Hayes to commit to closing Homestead. He refuses, but does claim they're moving children out of there as fast as they can...
(Nothing to do with tents + hurricane season + utter lack of plan, I'm sure.)
As part of this, she asks how many children are there now.
894, he says.
Days ago, it was 1300.
Two weeks before that, it was 2700.
Johnson agrees to do so.
We know, from court docs, etc., the effect this had on children--essentially used as bait--has been catastrophic.
After a moment's hedging, @ACFHHS Asst Sec Johnson said, "Yes."
ORR Director Hayes declined to answer.
Chairwoman DeLaura took that for "No," & Hayes didn't correct her.
This is Grade A Crap.
Management could do the same any day.
*As part of Congressional Oversight of the Executive, in particular children in the care of HHS, Congress DOES have this right.
Congresswoman @NitaLowey reminds everyone of one instance in which ORR was legislatively directed not to share info with ICE. She continues, "Yet the original MOA between HHS and DHS still stands, and many worthy sponsors are still terrified to come forward..."
"Yes, ma'am, we do."
"At the time of discharge," he elaborates, as if that's better.
1) Lesson learned: be prepared
2) What they're doing: asking grantees to provide MOAR BEDS
ORR's Director Hayes says the child'd be transferred to a center where there are appropriate interpreters.
Somehow, Johnson thinks professional educators do not understand these kinds of kids.
Hayes: Uh, we can look into that.
Okay, Andy: Go!
@RepAndyHarrisMD decides it was.
In fact, when @RepBonnie specifically asked Director Hayes what had been cut back bc of lack of funding, and told him to list everything, ALL he listed was:
...I do not see family reunification anywhere.
@RepAndyHarrisMD is a putz.
But what do I know. I'm just some schmuck from Oregon.
What, Rep Pocan asks, was going on during her other 53 days?
(Recall, I might've laughed a bit at that mischaracterization.)
Except Boys Town is specifically for children with behavioral and mental health issues.
No. It's ridiculous.
The kids at Homestead have ZERO privacy, even in the bathroom.
He seems to think it happens everywhere, & that ORR "child welfare experts agree."
Homestead, recall, has ZERO psychiatrists.
I find that also very hard to believe.
As does the Congresswoman, I dare say.
ORR Director Hayes, who gave them a no-bid contract for $340MILLION for services through November, has no idea.
But he'll get back to her, sure thing!
Hayes says no. He didn't want children released just for the sake of being released.
Like, Whaaaa? And Whhhyyyyyy?
She's way more articulate, though...
Hayes: No. But, we cool.
Johnson: I saw children learning homophones & they even knew the answers! They were excited about learning, but I decided that wasn't in their best interests & ended it.*
She's said it several times now.
Hayes: Yup. Went over it just last week with the emergency preparedness folks in Dade County.*
*Only about 2 months after the season started, no biggie
Congresswoman Clark asks about the allegations of sexual abuse by staff at Homestead, & ORR facilities in general.
Bringing the heavy artillery in now.
From what I can piece together, Congresswoman @KatherineClark wanted more info about 412 allegations of sexual abuse, but Hayes didn't know what report she referenced.
🚨Director Hayes stated that some kind of new report is coming in Aug.🚨
Now, FINALLY, they've moved the ping pong table away, but the phone is still out in the middle of everything, very not-private.
ORR Director Hayes: I do. But if you have any suggestions ...?
[I do, Mr Hayes: EAT MY SHORTS!]
*Numbers are preprogrammed
[I assume this is her closing statement. There was another glitchy bit.]
She points out that ORR wanting capacity for 20,000 beds--which is what Hayes asked for--when the MAX they have ever had in custody was 15K, last fall, BECAUSE OF THE MOAs,
That the very existence of those policies--fingerprinting entire households, sharing ALL info with DHS--put the brakes on discharging children out of ORR custody, &DIRECTLY led to the buildup of children in CBP custody.
She wants to know where in the world this 20,000 number is coming from, and what in the world justifies it: "We don't want an empire of beds!"
~@rosadelauro to ORR Director Hayes
@rosadelauro asks again, where is the 20,000 number coming from? How could you EVER need that many? "Also," she switches gear slightly, "why did Carizzo Springs get a MULTI YEAR contract?"
*the Congresswoman wasn't sure which.
For a Republican, he's surprisingly reasonable &agrees that it'd be good to know where that 20K figure is coming from. And that state licensed sites are better than influx. His district does include #FortSill.
@RepKClark is absolutely right. These are children. When they turn 18, they don't magically become adults who have committed some crime! And yet that's how they're treated.