Downtown Convention Center is not an option to house migrants

El Paso News
An online petition is asking the City of El Paso to consider opening up the Downtown Convention Center to the migrants as a housing facility. However it’s going to take more than just signatures to make that happen.
 
The City helps the migrant communities in need not just during the holidays, but year-round.
 
“It’s not just happening during the Christmas season. This is something that they are working on to support not only migrant communities, but the entire population in terms of support of housing and feeding folks who are in need of support. Whatever of the scenario of their life is, they’re there to support them,” Spokeswoman for the City of El Paso Laura Cruz-Acosta told KTSM.
 
The City has offered support to the non-profit organizations that are helping the hundreds of migrants being dropped off in the Borderland. Its provided transportation through Sun Metro, and security along with support with the Police Department and Fire Department.
 
In order to consider opening the doors to bigger facilities such as the Downtown Convention Center, the City still must follow state and federal government guidelines to what is considered as an “emergency situation.” Cruz-Acosta shared the influx of migrants only stay here 24 to 96 hours, and not permanently. That means they can leave at any time costing the City more.

“If we stand up a facility today because it’s been identified as an emergency, within that same day 6 hours later, it needs to shut down and that takes a lot of manpower and a lot of funds. So we have to be very careful in terms of the policies and procedures that we follow that are outlined by the federal and state government,” Cruz-Acosta shared.
 
While many have put a lot of time and energy away from their family and friends this Christmas season, the City said it appreciates the support from the community.
 
“We actually haven’t needed to stand up any of our facilities because the community has been so wonderful and supporting the non-profit organizations. We appreciate that,” Cruz-Acosta said.
 
The non-profit organizations have also helped by providing food, clothes, and assistance in making travel plans to the migrant’s final destination.

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