C.H. Huckelberry, County Administrator Re:
Undocumented Migrants Transiting through Pima County
July 11, 2014 Page 2
Figure 1: Border Apprehensions of Unaccompanied Minors along the Southwest Border.
Upon apprehension, these children from Central America are taken into custody by CBP. They are then quickly transferred to a new temporary processing center in Nogales, Arizona. On arrival, children are medically evaluated by US Public Health Service (federal) personnel. All children receive three vaccines that cover measles, mumps and rubella, pertussis and diphtheria, and meningococcus. Vaccination for influenza was added this week. The medical screening consists of a basic pediatric evaluation to identify critical problems requiring immediate attention; it also includes skin testing for tuberculosis, pregnancy testing, and behavioral health assessment. Of the more than 4,000 unaccompanied minors processed at the new Nogales facility; two cases of influenza, two cases of varicella (chicken pox), and a single case of tuberculosis were identified through this screening process and those children were provided follow-up care. The identification and treatment of these cases confirms the public health screening process at the Nogales facility is working. After three days, all medically cleared children are transferred by the Department of Defense by noncommercial air transport to temporary shelter facilities. These include Lackland Air Force Base in Texas, Ventura Naval Base in California, and Fort Sill in Oklahoma. Some children may instead be transported to one of approximately 100 shelter facilities contracted by the US Health and Human Services Office of Refugee Resettlement. Whether at a Department of Defense facility or contract shelter, the children receive comprehensive services that include food, shelter, clothing, recreation, education, and medical services. Shelter facilities are not open access; the children are not permitted to exit the facility without staff supervision. They remain onsite until they are discharged to a safe and secure environment, reunified with family, or legally processed and repatriated. The average shelter stay for unaccompanied minors is currently 35 days.