Mar 15, 2021 - Politics & Policy

AP: U.S. to house up to 3,000 migrant teens at Dallas convention center

Center for unaccompanied children in Texas.

A center for unaccompanied children in Texas. Photo: Sergio Flores/The Washington Post via Getty Images

The U.S. will begin using the downtown Dallas convention center as a "decompression center," to house up to 3,000 migrant teenagers, specifically boys ages 15 to 17, according to a memo obtained by the AP.

Why it matters: The convention center's conversion comes amid a rise in border crossings that has strained sheltering capacities along the U.S.-Mexico border. The Department of Health and Human Services is moving to open new facilities to house the children.

Flashback: The CDC had allowed shelters housing children to expand to full capacity in spite of a previous COVID-19 safety protocol, a change that highlighted the extent of the housing capacity crisis, Axios previously reported.

What's more: The surge at the border has already prompted the creation of new shelters for children, including a tent facility in Donna, Texas that is housing "more than 1,000 children and teenagers, some as young as 4," according to AP.

  • The government is also considering housing unaccompanied minors in a military base in Virginia, Reuters reports.

Go deeper: Why migrants are fleeing their homes for the U.S.

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