English classes, legal services cut for immigrant kids

June 05, 2019 - 11:13 am

PHOENIX (AP) — The government has stopped reimbursing some contracted shelters for the cost of teaching immigrant children English-language courses and providing legal services and recreational activities.

The Health and Human Services department notified shelters around the country last week that it was not going to reimburse them for teachers' pay or other costs. The move appears to violate a legal settlement known as the Flores agreement that mandates how the government must treat immigrant children in its care.

But the agency says it doesn't have the funding to provide those services as it deals with a soaring number of children in its care.

The Border Patrol says over 56,200 children without a parent have crossed the border since October, including 11,500 just last month.

HHS is seeking nearly $3 million in emergency funding to cover more beds and provide basic care.