Life for illegal immigrants at FLETC

Posted at: 06/25/2014 6:40 PM
By: Lauren Hansard, KOB Eyewitness News 4

The crisis of Central American children pouring over America’s southern border is about to hit home.

Texas is already overwhelmed with detainees, so hundreds are headed to the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center in Artesia.

KOB Eyewitness News 4 got the inside story on what life will be like for them at FLETC.    

“My breath was taken away,” said NM Representative Candy Spence Ezzell. “It's like an upscale hotel in there."

Ezzell toured the facility in Artesia on Tuesday.

She says each room will have eight beds, stuffed animals, toys, and a television.

“They will have housekeeping there, they will have laundry service there,  they will have three square meals a day, they will have medical attention, and we will be educating their children," said Ezzell.

Roswell Mayor Dennis Kintigh also toured the rooms on Tuesday.

“It could easily be the nicest place they have ever stayed," said Kintigh.

A spokesperson for the Department of Homeland Security tells KOB the government is committed to the safety and well-being of the immigrants while in custody.

Questions about security have also come up, some people wonder if the fence is enough.

Kintigh says a brown chain link fence is the only barrier to freedom.

“They will have no towers, there will be no cameras, there's no barbed wire on the fence,” said Kintigh. “We’re dealing with individuals who have come a thousand miles under very difficult conditions. This fence is not going to be adequate to stop these individuals. It's just not a real barrier to people who have come this far."

Federal officials say the immigrants will begin arriving this week.

Around 700 illegal immigrants are expected to stay in Artesia as the government works on possible deportation back to their home countries.