Group protests outside of Ahwatukee hotel used for housing immigrants
PHOENIX - At least one Phoenix-area hotel started accepting migrant families transported from the US-Mexico border by ICE, and on Wednesday, a group of protestors stood outside as busses arrived.
A group of protestors outside of an Ahwatukee hotel made it clear they didn’t want migrant families apprehended at the border staying there.
Doug James was one of the group's organizers and says, "I think people were shocked to find out that an old Holiday Inn was taken over by the government and they’re bussing illegals in here. Nobody knew this."
ICE has a nearly $87 million contract with a Texas nonprofit called Endeavors to provide housing for families seeking asylum at the border who haven’t been expelled.
"They’re bringing all of these thousands of people in. In situations that are overcrowded. They’re not being tested for COVID," James says, although the contract includes funding for COVID-19 testing.
Immigration attorney Gabriel Vadasz says he thinks the controversy and fear surrounding asylum seekers stems from misinformation.
"There's a pretty rigid set of rules they have to meet," he says. That includes good moral character, if you don't have a previous criminal history, you haven't been removed from the US previous and if you're not a flight risk.