Via The Guardian: Detained child's disease 'went untreated for weeks' at US immigration center. Excerpt:
Five-year-old Briany nibbled her nails as she peeked from behind her mother. Her eyes rimmed with dark circles, she continued to ask if she could go out to play. Her mother, Gladis, shook her head.
Briany is being treated for Shigellosis, a diarrheal disease caused by the Shigella group of bacteria, which according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is behind about 500,000 cases of diarrhea each year in the US. Briany lives with her mother as a detainee at the Berks County Residential Center in Leesport, Pennsylvania.
Her case is a worrying one, which the Pennsylvania department of human services has reported to the US Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Briany’s condition, it is alleged, went untreated for weeks, exposing more than 40 other children of migrant mothers to a highly infectious disease.
As the US struggles to cope with the arrival of thousands of migrants from Central America, time spent at the federal facility in which Gladis and Briany are held suggests a problem born of institutional neglect and with troubling potential consequences.
The Berks County Residential Center was once a 96-bed nursing home. Converted in 2001, it now holds more than 80 migrants who have come to the US to escape gang violence, rape and economic despair.
The Berks facility’s license to operate expired on 21 February. Because the facility continues to hold adults despite being licensed only to hold children, the state chose not to renew the license. As the decision is under appeal, the facility can continue to operate.