A group of California lawmakers got a first-hand look at immigrant children that were moved from overcrowded Texas to California and found them to be well-behaved and learning about the United States. It was one of the first glimpses we've got of some of the thousands of children who have illegally immigrated to the U.S. this year.
Seven members of the California Latino Legislative Caucus visited the Naval Base in Ventura County on Tuesday where 575 undocumented teens between the ages of 13 and 17 are being held.
"I was very satisfied to see these children being treated in a humane way," said CA state Senator Norma Torres.
Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez spoke with my Sacramento, CA news radio station KFBK and said she felt better after the seeing the facility the children are staying in. She said it's nothing fancy, but clean and adequate.
Gonzalez, who has two children of her own, said the group saw the children playing soccer and basketball. She said they are also have schooling lessons and learning English and history about the United States.
As for the reports of disease, scabies and other illnesses coming into our country?
Gonzalez said the kids are screened twice medically. First when they arrive by ICE (US Immigration and Customs Enforcement) and again when they are handed over to Health and Human Services.
State Senator Kevin de Leon called upon President Obama to do something about immigration reform, with or without Republican support.
For now, the children are just waiting to be reunited with members of their families in the United States.
Assemblywoman Gonzalez: "It can be uncomfortable for all of us I think, but at the same time gives us hope of how we can process refugees."
First published in The Huffington Post on July 10, 2014
KFBK Senior Editor Judy Farah has more than 25 years news experience in New York, Los Angeles and Sacramento. She's edited the KFBK Afternoon News with Kitty O'Neal the past 16 years while also directing the newsroom by assigning stories to reporters and scheduling guest interviews. Farah started out as a newspaper reporter on the East Coast, covering major stories as a reporter and editor for The Associated Press in Los Angeles, including the 1984 Olympics, the Oscars, Emmys, the presidency of Ronald Reagan and the criminals trials of the Night Stalker and the Hillside Stranglers.
Farah came to KFBK in 1996, and has helped direct coverage of five presidential elections, five governor's elections and the killing sprees of Yosemite Killer Cary Stayner and Scott Peterson. She reported live for two 13-hour days for KFBK from the 9-11 terrorist attacks. She was also the editor on KFBK's 2011 exclusive report that the Sacramento Kings were considering moving to Anaheim.
A graduate of William Paterson College in New Jersey, Farah has won three Edward R. Murrow awards, including one for Best Writing, while at KFBK. She's also earned three awards from the Northern California Radio Television News Directors Association for Best Series, Best Newscast and Best Sports Segment. She has also written for the Wall Street Journal, TV Guide, Los Angeles and Parents magazines. She was honored with a Jefferson Fellowship in 2009 and traveled to Japan, China and Hong Kong to study the Asian economy. In 2010, she was awarded a RTNDA RIAS Fellowship to travel to Germany, Belgium and Prague to study the European economy.
Farah currently is a national blogger for The Huffington Post and often speaks on news and social media. You can find her on Twitter @newsbabe1530
In her free time, Farah enjoys the outdoors by hiking along the American River bike trail and kayaking. A wine enthusiast, Farah's produced a monthly wine segment on KFBK the past five years and enjoys visiting our local foothill wineries.