Bishop meeting about immigrant children, border situation - Tucson News Now

Bishop meet about immigrant children, border situation

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TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

An organizational meeting was held at the Tucson Diocese this afternoon to make sure the hundreds of immigrant children being held in Nogales get needed services.

"The big challenge of course, is organization, says Tucson Bishop Gerald Kicanas, who hosted the meeting. "There's so many factors involved."

The meeting included Pima County elected officials, city of Tucson housing experts and elected officials, humanitarian organizations, federal immigration officials and District Three US Congressman Raul Grijalva.

The fact remains, the law provides for their custodial care but not necessarily for their detention," he says.

Several hundred Central American children are being housed in Nogales after being shipped to Arizona from Texas.

There are two groups which need care and special needs which is why Bishop Kicanas is being careful.

"There are mothers with children but also a second ground, unaccompanied children," he say.

Families from several Central American countries are sending their children to the United States, sometimes with an older sibling, sometimes not.

The children being housed in Nogales range in age from 5 to 18, we are told.

"These countries are under economic strain right now, economically and violence," Bishop Kicanas says. "these individuals are fleeing dangerous situations."

Kicanas believes many families believe the only way to save their children is to get them out of the country.

"It's our responsibility to provide some kind of humanitarian response to this humanitarian situation," he says.

The groups will meet again June 25th to compare notes on how the crisis management is going.

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