(Reuters) – Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said on Tuesday he is working with local charities to find temporary refuge for some of the Central American children caught illegally entering the United States even as politicians elsewhere publicly declare them unwelcome.
Garcetti said the U.S. Health and Human Services Department recently contacted him seeking assistance in its efforts to place such undocumented minors in temporary shelters while they await further immigration or deportation proceedings.
The surge has inundated authorities in Texas, and created a backlash in places like Murrieta, California, north of San Diego, and Oracle, Arizona, near Tucson, where some migrants were to be sent for processing at overflow centers.
Opponents have said the flood of immigrants poses public safety and health concerns in their communities, as many of the young detainees and family units were likely to be released under limited supervision after initial intake and screening.
The subject arose at a forum hosted by Politico Magazine, where Garcetti was asked whether Los Angeles, the nation’s second-most populous city, would be willing to accept any of the youngsters on a temporary basis.
“We are going to. We’ve already talked to HHS,” he said, adding, “These are children”…