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Camp Roberts Army Nat’l Guard base will house 5,000 migrant children from U.S.-Mexico border, supervisor says

Camp Roberts (Ian Abbott/Flickr)

A San Luis Obispo County supervisor on Thursday announced Camp Roberts will house thousands of migrant children from the United States-Mexico border.

The Army National Guard base on the border of San Luis Obispo and Monterey counties will act as a shelter for 5,000 migrant children, District 3 Supervisor Dawn Ortiz-Legg said in a news release.

Ortiz-Legg said the federal government informed the county on Monday that Camp Roberts would host the children. Although creating the shelter will be “an enormous effort,” no local resources will be required, she said.

It’s unclear when the children would begin arriving or how long they would be housed here.

Unaccompanied migrant children are initially held in U.S. Customs and Border Protection custody (CBP) on the border before being transferred to a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) shelter, like the one at Camp Roberts.

Once family members or sponsors are located, the children are transferred out of HHS custody.

As of Tuesday, 735 children were in CBP custody and 22,174 children were in HHS custody, according to HHS and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

“While the Biden administration is working with host countries to reduce youth migration, my request to the community is to consider the trauma and stress these children have experienced,” Ortiz-Legg said in the release. “They took incredible risks so they might have a future chance to thrive and contribute in a safe society.”


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