Four-Year-Old Girl's Nappies Changed By Other Children In US Detention Centre

A child who was being detained in a cage by the US Border Patrol had to have her nappies changed by other children after getting separated from her family members.

The Associated Press reports that a 16-year-old who is also being detained in the South Texas facility looked after the four-year-old girl that she had never met before and even taught others how to change her, just in case.

Eventually attorneys asked what the girl's situation was before they found and reunited her with her aunt.

The teenager told her tragic story to Michelle Brane, who is the director of migrant rights at the Women's Refuge Commission, when she visited the facility last Friday.

Brane said: "She had to teach other kids in the cell to change her diaper.

She said that as the child only speaks K'iche - the native language of Guatemala - agents thought that she was much younger than four years old, primarily because she refused to speak or communicate with anyone.

This is because she doesn't speak Spanish, the main language in the facility.

Brane continued: "She was so traumatized that she wasn't talking.

"She was just curled up in a little ball."

The facility is based in a warehouse in Texas and houses around 1,100 people. It has been reported that hundreds of children are being kept separate from their parents and families within the facility and others like it.

This is because of a 'zero tolerance' policy towards unlawful immigration that was announced in April 2018 by US Attorney General Jeff Sessions. This means that adults can now be tried in courts of law for crossing the border illegally.

Jeff Sessions. Credit: PA
Jeff Sessions. Credit: PA

As a result of these prosecutions, they can be separated from their children.

Since the policy was brought in nearly 2,000 children are thought to have been taken away from their parents because they crossed the border and were living in the USA illegally.

Many of those kids that have been removed from their immediate families are sent away to live with other family members, but before that is arranged they are detained in cages within government-run facilities and restricted to only two hours of time outside of the building every day.

Democratic Senator Jeff Merkley, of Oregon, has argued against this detention, claiming that it is traumatising for the children involved.

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

He said: "Those kids inside who have been separated from their parents are already being traumatized.

"It doesn't matter whether the floor is swept and the bedsheets tucked in tight."

He also said that he was denied entry to a children's shelter earlier this month.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Tom Wood

Tom Wood is a freelance journalist and LADbible contributor. He graduated from University of London with a BA in Philosophy before studying for a Masters in Journalism at the University of Salford. He has previously written for the M.E.N Group as well as working for several top professional sports clubs. Contact him on [email protected]

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