Fort Sill shelter for immigrant children to close this week, feds say
The federal government announced Monday that emergency shelters in place at military bases and forts across the country will be closed.The shelters, including Fort Sill in Lawton, opened at the beginning of June to take in undocumented and unaccompanied children. Oklahoma's shelter at Fort Sill is scheduled to close by the end of this week. Other shelters in San Antonio and California will remain open for two to eight weeks.Health and Human Services spokesman Kenneth Wolfe said operations at the shelters will soon be suspended because there have been fewer child immigrants caught at the border and the government has expanded capacity at other shelters.HHS said in the press release that the three temporary shelters could be re-opened if the number of children increases significantly. The possibility of it reopening did not sit well with Governor Mary Fallin. The governor's office released a statement saying "I am pleased that the Obama Administration is finally listening to the people of Oklahoma and acting to close the Fort Sill facility for illegal immigrants. However, I am disturbed the administration chose to renew its lease on the facility, thereby preserving the option of reopening it in the future."Fallin also issued this question the President Barack Obama: "will this facility be reopened, or can we trust that is has closed for good?"The shelters have housed a combined 7,700 immigrant children since opening in May and early June.