Some immigrant children may be may be moving to New England - ABC6 - Providence, RI and New Bedford, MA News, Weather

Some immigrant children may be may be moving to New England

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By Mark Curtis

The immigration crisis on the southern border may be moving north.

Massachusetts is considering a request to house some of the children being dropped at the border.

Connecticut has already said no to a similar request and we're told Rhode Island will likely be asked to help.

But critics say the Ocean State simply can't afford it.

"If they are here and they are going to stay here, now we have to take care of them. We have a health situation if they have to use our hospitals;” says Larry Girouard, President of the Rhode Island Taxpayers, “we have to educate them. We already have an educational system that's struggling a little bit, so you're putting more burden onto the teachers."

There are also concerns now that some of the children are coming into the U.S. with communicable diseases.

Some have wondered if buildings might be made available at the massive John O. Pastore Center in Cranston, or any of the state's National Guard facilities.

A source tells ABC6 Rhode Island has very little bed space to help.

Meantime, the international institute of Rhode Island says it will help, if asked.

"I don't know what services would be available, if in fact the Governor welcomed them, so we'll just work with the state in whatever way we could to support them as if, as we would with refugees,” says Kathy Cloutier, the Executive Director Dorcas International institute of RI.

It's possible all 50 states will be asked to help to ease the burden of the border states.

(C) WLNE/ TV 2014

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