Acting head of border agency steps down
HOUSTON - The acting commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection says he's stepping down amid outrage over his agency's treatment of detained migrant children.
John Sanders said in a message to CBP employees Tuesday that he would resign on July 5.
CBP is the agency that apprehends and first detains migrant parents and children crossing the U.S.-Mexico border. Lawyers who visited CBP facilities last week described squalid conditions: inadequate food, lack of medical care, and children trying to care for toddlers.
Six children have died since late last year after being detained by CBP.
Sanders pushed Congress to pass $4.5 billion in humanitarian funding. In an interview last week with The Associated Press, Sanders talked about how the deaths "impacted him profoundly."
U.S. government officials say they've moved more than 100 kids back to a remote border facility where lawyers reported detained children were caring for each other and had inadequate food, water, and sanitation.
An official from U.S. Customs and Border Protection said Tuesday that the "majority" of the roughly 300 children detained at Clint, Texas, last week have been placed in facilities operated by the Office of Refugee Resettlement.
The official, who briefed reporters on the condition of anonymity, wouldn't say exactly how many children are currently detained there. But the official says Clint is better equipped than some of the Border Patrol's tents to hold children.
Attorneys who visited Clint last week said older children were trying to take care of toddlers.
Some had been locked for three weeks inside the facility, where 15 children were sick with the flu and another 10 were in medical quarantine.