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Tents at the Influx Care Facility for unaccompanied children on Feb. 21 in Carrizo Springs, Texas. Photo: Sergio Flores/The Washington Post via Getty Images

The Biden administration reopened a temporary facility for unaccompanied migrant children in Carrizo Springs, Texas, on Monday, the Washington Post reports.

Why it matters: Officials say the camp is necessary because of an uptick in migrant children crossing the U.S.-Mexico border. Meanwhile, the coronavirus pandemic has reduced the federal government's capacity to house children before they can be reunited with sponsors.

Dozens of migrant teens have already been taken to the facility, which was open for one month in summer 2019 and is being reactivated to hold as many as 700 children ages 13 to 17.

  • The 66-acre site is operated by the Department of Health and Human Services, the agency that oversees services for migrant children. HHS had about 7,000 children in its custody as of Sunday, spokesperson Mark Weber told the Post.

What they're saying: "This is not okay, never has been okay, never will be okay —
no matter the administration or party," Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said in a tweet Tuesday about the reopening of the facility.

  • "Our immigration system is built on a carceral framework. It’s no accident that challenging how we approach both these issues are considered 'controversial' stances," she added.

The big picture: The Biden administration is also planning to reopen a for-profit facility for migrant children in Homestead, Florida, the Miami Herald reports.

  • House Democrats introduced a Biden-backed immigration bill that includes an eight-year pathway to citizenship for millions of undocumented immigrants.
  • The bill is unlikely to win needed Republican support, but represents President Biden's aggressive immigration priorities, Axios' Stef Kight and Shawna Chen report.

Go deeper

Garland rips Trump's family separation policy: "I can't imagine anything worse"

Judge Merrick Garland, President Biden's nominee for attorney general, decried the Trump administration's "zero-tolerance" immigration policy at his confirmation hearing Monday, calling it "shameful" and agreeing to cooperate with future investigations.

Why it matters: The policy — which "came at the expense" of weighing the impact on families, according to a Justice Department watchdog report — resulted in over 500 parents still separated from their children as of October 2020. Biden has launched a task force on reuniting families as part of a campaign pledge.

3 hours ago - Health

Axios AM Deep Dive: Covid forever

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

It was 563 days ago that the WHO declared Covid-19 a pandemic. This Axios AM Deep Dive, led by healthcare reporter Caitlin Owens, looks at our Covid future.

Federal judge blocks vaccine mandate for NYC teachers

Students are dismissed from the first day of school at PS 133 in Brooklyn on Sept. 13. Photo: Michael Nagle/Xinhua via Getty Images

A federal appeals court judge on Friday temporarily blocked New York City schools from enforcing a vaccine mandate for school employees, days before it was set to take effect, AP reports.

Driving the news: The vaccine mandate was set to begin on Monday, prompting concerns over staffing shortages in schools across the nation's largest school system.