Officials Scrambling To Provide Self Shelter For Unaccompanied Minors Crossing Border

CBS4's Chris Martinez has the latest on the border crisis.

Video Transcript

- While the White House defends its policies at the southern border, officials are scrambling to provide safe shelter for the children who make the treacherous journey alone.

- As CBS4's Chris Martinez reports, a new facility in Southern California is filling up rapidly.

CHRIS MARTINEZ: Hundreds of young migrants will continue arriving here at the San Diego Convention Center until the facility is at capacity.

TODD GLORIA: We will expect some more next week until we get to our full capacity of 1,450 sometime expected next week.

CHRIS MARTINEZ: This shelter is for unaccompanied 13 to 17-year-old girls, transferred here from border patrol detention facilities, which are not designed for minors. The Biden administration says it's pursuing longer term solutions to the flood of Central American migrants arriving at the US border each day.

JEN PSAKI: We know this will be a diplomatic process. Our view is it's not if, but when. We work through with these countries the best ways we can work together to address root causes.

CHRIS MARTINEZ: Lawmakers from both parties visited the border over the weekend, with Republicans blaming President Biden for the worsening crisis.

DAN SULLIVAN: There is an open border policy. There is a catch and release policy. And these were changes that the Biden administration instituted.

CHRIS MARTINEZ: A number of facilities are now helping with the overflow of unaccompanied minors. A Dallas convention center is sheltering thousands of boys. And at the San Diego shelter, politicians say it might be a short term solution, but it's the right thing for now.

SCOTT PETERS: They're going to have a tough journey. But my colleagues here before you are happy for this act of compassion, and we're all committed to solving the bigger problem.

CHRIS MARTINEZ: San Diego's mayor says the girls arriving there are receiving medical and educational services, and especially appreciate a warm bed. Chris Martinez, CBS News, Los Angeles.

- According to the latest government figures, there are about 18,000 unaccompanied migrant children in US federal custody.