Once children with no legal status are apprehended, they are transferred to the care of the HHS Office of Refugee Resettlement. That office cares for them until they are released to sponsors — usually parents or other relatives — while their immigration cases are heard.
The federal government put out requests for housing proposals to keep a total of 5,000 children here and in four other sunbelt cities: Dallas/Forth Worth, San Antonio, Houston and Phoenix.
HHS visited Georgia's Fort Benning in June, part of its effort to find shelter for children at military bases. The Columbus-area military base was removed from consideration because of concerns about troop readiness, according to the Pentagon.
Attempts to contact HHS were unsuccessful.