DOD approves HHS request to house migrant children at Fort Bliss, Joint Base San Antonio


An entrance to Fort Bliss is shown on June 25, 2018. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

The Department of Defense on Wednesday approved a request to help house unaccompanied migrant minors at Joint Base San Antonio and Fort Bliss in El Paso, according to Department of Defense spokesman John Kirby.

“Today, the Department of Defense approved a request for assistance from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to temporarily house unaccompanied migrant children at a vacant dormitory at Joint Base San Antonio – Lackland, Texas, and an area of land on Fort Bliss, Texas to construct suitable temporary housing facility.

“DoD will provide HHS officials access to these locations immediately to begin initial actions to prepare for receiving unaccompanied migrant children as soon as preparations are complete,” Kirby said.

HHS will maintain responsibility for the well-being and support for the migrant children at all times while they are housed on the installations and the support will be on a fully reimbursable basis, according to a statement.

HHS requested the use of a vacant dorm at Lackland and for a field on Fort Bliss on Tuesday afternoon.

Kirby said military training, operations or other military requirements, including National Guard and reserve readiness, will not be negatively affected.

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