KGUN 9NewsLocal News


Arizona Rep. urges for migrant facility in Tucson sooner

Hole in border wall in Cochise County
Posted at 6:43 PM, Mar 19, 2021

TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — A new migrant facility in Tucson is set to open in mid-April, but a local congressman is worried that is not soon enough.

"We are urging that it be done sooner than that," Arizona's 3rd Congressional District Rep. Raul Grijalva said.

He says the facility is needed to support the increasing number of unaccompanied minors in Arizona.

"The additional shelter is for the anticipated growth of the population unaccompanied minors," Grijalva said.

Right now, the size and location of the facility is still being worked on. Grijalva says that it will likely be smaller than the recent facilities in Texas.

"What was happening in Texas was up to 2700 to 3000," Grijalva said. "I am just using that number it would probably be a lot less here in Southern Arizona."

Grijalva says he does not know if the one shelter in Tucson will be enough.

"I hope it is. I think once the system is up and operating and we can do this expeditiously," Grijalva said.

Grijalva says that this will only help solve part of the problem.

"Homeland security has got to rebuild back up its infrastructure," Grijalva said when discussing the backlog and hold times some unaccompanied minors are having at migrant facilities.

Grijalva also says that the federal government should also be providing resources to local nonprofits and shelters that assist migrants.