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Texas Attorney General appeals licensing case

On Monday the Texas attorney general appealed a judge's ruling that prevents two federal family detention centers in South Texas from being licensed as child care facilities, reports ABC News.

As we reported earlier, Judge Karin Crump ruled that the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) could not license the South Texas Family Residential Facility in Dilley, Texas, or the Karnes County Residential Center in Karnes City, Texas. This lawsuit was filed by immigrant families who had been detained in those facilities, who argued that the state’s motivation for licensing the facilities is to defend harsh federal immigration enforcement rather than to protect children. The temporary restraining order from Judge Crump prevented the licensing of the Dilley facility, and invalidated the license for the Karnes facility, which had been granted before the lawsuit began.

Attorney General Ken Paxton filed an appeal in order to have the two facilities licensed by DFPS, following the ruling by a federal judge last year that immigrant children would have to be released if the facilities were not licensed. The attorney general's office argued earlier this year that the licensing would improve safety because it requires improved background checks for employees and requires facilities to comply with unannounced inspections. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is reviewing the ruling and a spokesperson has said that “operational activities continue without interruption at this time.”

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