HOMESTEAD, FLA. (WSVN) – Several Democratic candidates made their way to the Homestead Detention Center the morning after the second night of debates in South Florida.
Nearly a dozen candidates made their way to the center throughout the week, and on Friday the last batch arrived with a crowd of protesters to see the conditions the children are being held in with their own eyes.
“They are locking up children, separating children from their parents,” said Sen. Kristen Gillibrand.
“We’re all here because we know that we have to stand up for our America,” said Sen. Kamala Harris.
7News cameras captured the children housed at the facility outside of the building.
To get a tour, the Democratic hopefuls had to request a tour two weeks in advance.
“We went into that facility and requested the opportunity to see what’s going on there, and we were told no,”said Mayor Pete Buttigieg.
Miami-Dade County Commissioner Levine Cava was granted access inside the center after her request was accepted.
“There are almost 2,500 children. They’re divided into two camps, the north and the south. The older children on the north,” said Cava. “We saw them lined up, going to wash their hands, going in to eat their meals. We saw them in an activities tent where they were going to be doing some P.E. type activities. The children, as I understand it, are occupied.”
As the candidates said their goodbyes to South Florida, they took one last look at the center they say needs to be shut down.
“The time has come to recognize that we can do a better job,” said Gov. John Hickenlooper.
“I believe that we can fix out broken immigration system and treat people with common sense and compassion, instead of with cruelty,” said candidate Julian Castro.
Joe Biden was noticeably absent for not showing up at the center this week, but he did state he plans on visiting some time during his campaign.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.