At Ursula, an immigration facility in McAllen, TX, 500 children separated from their families are crammed 20 to a cage. It's home to kids of all ages, from toddlers to young teens (once a teen turns 18, they are magically converted into a criminal and moved to the adult facility).
According to an advocate who was allowed to visit the children, a teenager in one cage has been teaching other kids to change the diapers of the toddlers they are caged with, whose adult family members are imprisoned elsewhere.
It's a rare glimpse into life inside the largely secret prison camps (sitting US Congressmen and other officials have been denied entry, as have the press).
A US border patrol official quoted by the AP said that the policy of separating children from their parents was intended as a deterrent to others, a tacit admission that the policy is deliberately and performatively cruel.
An Ipsos/Daily Beast poll of 1,000 adults conducted on June 14-15 found that 46% of Republicans support the policy of separating children from their parents at the border.
Donald Trump has falsely claimed that Democrats are responsible for the policy of separating children from their parents.
Michelle Brane, director of migrant rights at the Women’s Refugee Commission, met with a 16-year-old girl who had been taking care of a young girl for three days. The teen and others in their cage thought the girl was 2 years old.
“She had to teach other kids in the cell to change her diaper,” Brane said.
Brane said that after an attorney started to ask questions, agents found the girl’s aunt and reunited the two. It turned out that the girl was actually 4 years old. Part of the problem was that she didn’t speak Spanish, but K’iche, a language indigenous to Guatemala.
“She was so traumatized that she wasn’t talking,” Brane said. “She was just curled up in a little ball.”
Hundreds of children wait in Border Patrol facility in Texas [Nomaan Merchant/AP]
Poll: Republicans Approve of Trump’s Family Separation Policy [Gideon Resnick/Daily Beast]