Florida, Virginia among sites for child migrant facilities

The entrance to the Border Patrol station in Clint, Texas, Wednesday, June 26, 2019. Migrant children being housed at the Border Patrol facility near El Paso appeared mostly clean and were being watched by hallway monitors on Wednesday, less than a week since they reported living there in squalid conditions with inadequate food, water and sanitation. (AP Photo/Cedar Attanasio)
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ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) -- The Trump administration is scouting sites in central Florida, Virginia and Los Angeles for future facilities to hold unaccompanied children who have crossed the U.S.-Mexico border.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services sent letters to Florida lawmakers Monday saying it is looking for vacant properties in those locations to build permanent licensed facilities for those under age 18 who have entered the United State illegally without a parent or guardian.

The letter says the permanent sites will minimize the need for unlicensed temporary detention centers.

The nation's largest child migrant facility is in Homestead, Florida, where immigrant advocates have described "prisonlike" conditions.

Democratic Florida Rep. Anna Eskamani says the government should be closing camps instead of opening new ones.

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