Discussions have flared on the Internet and elsewhere regarding the potential housing of underage illegal immigrants in two now-defunct private colleges in Virginia. The Richmond Times-Dispatch reported Friday that the deal underway between the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and Saint Paul’s College has been halted because of the fervent opposition in the community. Even the local congressman, Rep. Robert Hurt, R-5th, was on the bandwagon to demand that the DHHS drop the plan immediately. He referred to the plan as “underhanded.” Comments on the above-referenced article are very animated.
In an article posted on the same site yesterday, prior to the Saint Paul’s decision being reversed, the DHHS casually let it slip that Virginia Intermont College is also being considered as a potential site for a refugee camp for underage illegal immigrants. The government agencies refer to these underage border-crossers as children, but according to Essey Workie, regional administrator for the DHHS, the majority of the “children” would be ages 14 to 17.
CNN states that around 60,000 unaccompanied minors will be crossing the border this year, but the Obama Administration has not released real figures. One thing is for sure, most residents in the areas in question do not want this influx of illegal immigrants in their community. The authorities assured the Lawrenceville residents that the “children” would have been screened for criminal intent, but that did little to assuage their reservations.
As the news of Virginia Intermont’s name being in the hat as a possibility for housing hundreds of these illegal teens, Facebook is popping with people up-in-arms about this situation. Shock and disbelief are the first reactions! Although Virginia Intermont’s campus is definitely being considered, as of Thursday, there had been no official contact made by the DHHS.