State Watch

Video shows migrant children dragged, pushed at since-shuttered shelter

Videos from a since-shuttered migrant shelter in Arizona show children being pushed and dragged by staffers, The Arizona Republic reported Friday.

The shelter, Hacienda Del Sol, was shut down in late October. The newspaper said it obtained the videos from the state Department of Health Services under public records law.

Southwest Key, the parent company of the shelter, had reported the incidents from mid-September to state authorities and federal officials, according to the Republic, but declined to comment to the newspaper at the time.{mosads}

The videos involve three children and numerous staffers. It is unclear if the incidents shown in the footage contributed directly to the shelter being closed following negotiations with state health officials.

One video reported by the Republic shows a male staffer dragging and pulling a boy into a room, then slapping him and pushing him against a wall. The child seems to retaliate, then the staffer leaves the room.

In another video, a female staffer drags a child through a room when the child refuses to move.

Southwest Key spokesman Jeff Eller did not comment on the videos to the Republic, but did reiterate the company’s acceptance of the facility suspension and a pledge to retrain all staff.

“[T]he investigation determined that while physical force and restraint techniques were used against these minor children, these actions did not rise to the level of criminal charges,” Sgt. Joaquin Enriquez said in a statement to the newspaper. 


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