Critics have raised human rights and decency concerns over a proposal to turn an ex-nursing home in Texas into a family detention center for people entering the U.S. illegally.
Jim Wells County commissioners voted Monday to authorize negotiations with federal authorities and proposed operator Serco Inc., with about 200 jobs. More than 50 people attended a public hearing June 9 in Alice about the proposed site in San Diego, 125 miles south of San Antonio.
Two similar centers opened in 2014 in Texas. A Serco executive, Carlo Uchello, said on June 9 that new facilities will be more residential.
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Social worker Mariah Boone displayed a poster saying: "Putting kids in prison is child abuse."
Bishop Michael Mulvey of the Diocese of Corpus Christi, in a statement, said such facilities go against human decency.