Talks about housing migrant children at Camp Roberts on “indefinite hold”
CENTRAL COAST, Calif. (KION) Camp Roberts in Monterey and San Luis Obispo counties was a site under consideration for housing unaccompanied migrant children, but according to Congressman Jimmy Panetta's office, those talks are on "indefinite hold."
"HHS notified us today that Camp Roberts is being put on an indefinite hold. This is because the number of kids in HHS care has dipped dramatically, so the agency is considering other facilities at this time (none located locally)," his office said in a statement.
Camp Roberts was one of several facilities under consideration. If the Department of Health and Human Services did decide to use it, Panetta's Office said the post would house the children until they could be placed with a family or sponsor, but before a court determination about their legal status.
The possibility came with mixed reaction from local officials. Assemblymember Robert Rivas told KION in April that he believes it is important for actions to be taken at a local level.
"Here in the United States of America, we are a country of immigrants, we are a country that has always shown compassion for our neighbors and for others. And so certainly, this is a time to accommodate these children that have no place else to go," Rivas said.
Former Monterey County Republican Party Chair Jeff Gorman said at the time that it should be kept as a border control issue, not a domestic one.
"To bring that problem into the Central Coast where we were having trouble problems taking care of our own kids,” Gorman said. “We got minimal schooling. We have been adequate supplies. We have kids that don't have internet. And we're going to be bringing that problem right here to the Central Coast. I just think that it's too little too late."