HOUSTON WE HAVE A PROBLEM: AN INVESTIGATION INTO THE TRUMP MANDATE TO SEPARATE REFUGEE CHILDREN FROM THEIR PARENTS
That government contractor is SOUTHWEST KEY PROGRAMS:
- Based in Austin, TX
- Houses more than 5,100 immigrant children (half of all those currently in government custody)
- Is paid more than $400 million to care for immigrant children in 27 shelters across Texas, Arizona and California.
If they are not familiar to you, they should be! Don't you remember when Sen. Jeff Merkley (Dem, Oregon) was barred from entering one of its biggest facilities? That facility is located in Brownsville, TX at a former Walmart building and houses almost 1,500 immigrant children between the ages of 10 and 17.
Before I continue...
I must clarify that the Star of Hope organization sold its facility on Emancipation in 2016 and moved bigger location on Reed Road. According to the Houston Chronicle the facility was put back into use during the aftermath of Harvey when the city leased the 53,600-square-foot facility and partnered with nonprofit NEW HOPE HOUSING to run its operations. There is a screenshot of a 2017 property tax statement showing that Star of Hope is still the owner, please stop sharing it. This is the proper information:
As you can see, the CURRENT owner of the property is 419 HOPE PARTNERS LLC and they are ultimately the ones who stand to benefit from leasing out their facility to house refugee children who have been torn away from their parents and loved ones. The Chronicle made sure to note that the "facility underwent a full occupancy inspection and a certificate of occupancy was issued last week. It also received a change-of-ownership inspection in March. She said it has a food service establishment permit allowing it to provide meals on site." Now that we have clarification on who to direct our ire towards, the Chronicle listed David Denenburg as a contact and tried to reach out to them, "with 419 Hope Partners, the listed owners of the property, declined to comment. Denenburg specializes in the restoration and re-purposing of buildings, with an emphasis on historical structures, according to his website. One purchase includes the 1938 Schlumberger building in the East End." It seems that the paperwork is in order and the only thing standing between this facility being used for an internment camp is the Texas Department of Health and Human Services Commission which is reviewing the licensing request from Southwest Key.
In part two of this series we will explore:
WHO ARE THE PLAYERS BEHIND 419 HOPE PARTNERS LLC?