Politicians tour immigrant children facility

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YONKERS -

Several local leaders toured a Westchester facility that is housing immigrant children separated from their families at the southern border.

Reps. Eliot Engel, Nita Lowey and Sean Patrick Maloney and Westchester County Executive George Latimer had been denied access to Rising Ground in Yonkers two weekends ago. 

Engel and Latimer, along with state Sens. Shelley Mayer, Andrea-Stewart Cousins and New York City Public Advocate Letitia James were among the group touring the campus to make sure the kids are in good care.

Nearly 700 children have been placed in facilities throughout New York, during a five-week period under the Trump administration's zero tolerance policy.

At least 20 children from Nicaragua, El Salvador and Guatemala, ages 12 to 17, were being housed at Rising Ground, formally known as Leake & Watts, according to officials. It's one of four places in Westchester holding migrant children. Officials say the children are in communication with their families.

"We should not have been put in this position in the first place, and that's why when I go back to Washington in a few days, I'm going to fight these ridiculous inhumane policies. Frankly, the president of the United States should be ashamed of himself," says Rep. Eliot Engel.

President Trump halted the separations two weeks ago. But the Trump administration has not released instructions on how to reunite the families.

It's still unclear how many of the migrant children are still in Westchester or are now back with their parents.

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