As the true scope of the migrant crisis at the southern border becomes more apparent each day, the harrowing conditions in which unaccompanied youth are being held have prompted one prominent governor to demand immediate action.
Fox News reports that Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott revealed Wednesday that he has received information about alleged sexual assaults against migrant children at a San Antonio detention facility and demanded that the Biden administration take immediate action to address a situation he says is the result of the president’s “disastrous policies.”
According to Abbott, both the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services and the Texas Health and Human Services Commission have made reports of claimed child neglect and sexual abuse at the Freeman Coliseum facility which were then forwarded to his office, as Fort Worth CBS affiliate station KTVT noted.
Four different types of concerns were raised with regard to the treatment of children at the detention center, including incidents of sexual assault, lack of proper nutrition for detainees, insufficient staffing levels, and an inability to keep children who have tested positive for COVID-19 separate from those who have not, Fox News added.
The circumstances caused Abbott to issue a stinging rebuke of President Biden’s decisions to reverse Trump-era immigration policies, saying:
In short, the facility is a health and safety nightmare. The Biden administration is now presiding over the abuse of children.
The Biden administration must immediately shut down this facility, and the children in this facility should be moved to other federally run facilities where the government has the space, personnel and resource to ensure their safety.
The Biden administration caused this crisis and has repeatedly failed to address it. The administration failed to plan for the influx of children they invited to come. Now they face allegations of despicable child abuse and neglect.
Abbott’s criticism comes after a March migrant influx which saw over 171,000 illegal border crossings that included more than 18,800 unaccompanied children – the highest tally for a single month since 2006, according to the Washington Post.
As the New York Post noted, President Biden tapped Vice President Kamala Harris two weeks ago to take the lead on addressing the crisis at the border, though she has yet to visit the area or held a press conference outlining steps she or the administration may be taking in that regard.
Harris has, however, gone home to California for the Easter holiday, visited a bakery in Chicago, and been, as former Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley asserted, “missing in action” on the escalating humanitarian disaster.
It remains to be seen whether allegations of sexual assault and child neglect will finally be enough to shame administration officials into confronting the extent of the chaos sown by opening the door to any and all comers, but with Republicans like Abbott now shining a bright light on the awful truth, they soon may have little choice.