Local facility to move forward with plans to house children - WNEM TV 5

Local facility to move forward with plans to house undocumented children

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A local facility says it will move forward with plans to bring undocumented children to mid-Michigan.

More than 200 people packed Vassar High School Wednesday night to get their questions answered.

Wolverine Human Services says it hopes to enter a contract with the government to bring teens to the facility. As many as 120 could be housed there.

Right now the facility is working to get the proper licensee, which is a six week process.

Vassar residents are divided over the idea that undocumented children could soon find refuge in Mid-Michigan.

Wolverine Human Services Vice President Derrick McCree said there are contract negotiations will most likely result in the Vassar facility providing short term housing for the children.

"I believe that by the end of this week we should have an agreement in place with our Illinois agency. The agency in Illinois is working with the federal government not us, we would be subcontracting," McCree said.

Congressman Dan Kildee said on Tuesday that no facilities in his district were being considered. But at that time his office was unaware that Wolverine was in talks to subcontract with another agency.

"They've had verbal approval from the government to move forward with this venture of subcontracting. We are fairly confident that will work, but I would never say done deal everything is approved," McCree said.

He also said Wolverine is a non-profit agency and they aren't trying to gain a profit from this contract.

"We are not doing this to get profits out of this, we budgeted at cost, and don't plan to fall into the red from this, but don't plan to go heavily into the black," McCree said.

Kildee said the situation could have been avoided with better immigration reform laws, but it's a national problem that must be dealt with.

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