2014-06-25 / News

Illegal alien children crisis calls out to local EMS for help

BY
TONY VINDELL

Although the crisis with under aged illegal aliens has not spilled over into Willacy County, the local Emergency Medical Services is lending a helping hand.

The EMS portable hospital was taken to Mc Allen over the weekend and is now being used to house children needing a place to sleep.

Frank Torres, the EMS director, said officials from Hidalgo County called him Thursday to request assistance from their counterparts here.

“We took the portable hospital equipped with 16 beds,” he said. “We set it up Friday afternoon and came back to Raymondville.”

Torres said the hospital is on the parking lot of Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Church beside three other portable buildings.

He doesn’t know how long it will be there, so it could be one, two or more weeks.

The crisis with under aged aliens has created a nightmare for some border towns and for law enforcement officials like the Texas Department of Public Safety and the U.S. Border Patrol.

On Monday, Texas Gov. Rick Perry was in the Rio Grande Valley to tour some of the facilities holding illegal aliens.

According to reports, Perry described the situation as a humanitarian castatrophe.

At the BCFS facility south of Raymondville, the alien crisis had an impact for the organization based in San Antonio.

The facility is holding alien children on a temporary basis.

Cristal Piferrer, a media spokeswoman, declined to comment saying they have a contract with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

She referred questions to the federal agency.

Ken Wolfe, a spokesman with USDHHS administration for children and families, sent a fact sheet about what they referred to as Unaccompanied Alien Children, or UAC.

It puts the number of referrals from an average of 6,775 from 2001 to 2203 to 80,000 this year.

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