Mass. Will Not Host Unaccompanied Migrant Minors After All

Lucy Francis, of Lynn, Mass., center, displays a placard and chants slogans during a rally, Tuesday, July 22, 2014, on the steps of City Hall, in Lynn, Mass., held to protest what organizers describe as the scapegoating of immigrants for problems in the city. The mayor of Lynn and education officials complain their schools are being overwhelmed by young Guatemalans who speak neither English or Spanish as their first language. (AP Photo)
The potential of bringing unaccompanied migrant minors to Massachusetts caused protests on both sides.

Massachusetts will not need to open shelters for unaccompanied minors who were caught at the Southern border, federal officials said Tuesday afternoon.

Officials said the change was due to a decrease in the number of unaccompanied minors crossing the border, as well as “expanded capacity at existing shelters,” according to The Boston Globe’s Michael Levenson.

“Once again the people of Massachusetts have displayed great generosity and compassion,” Governor Deval Patrick said in a statement. “It appears that there is not a need for Massachusetts to serve these children at this time, but I am proud of our willingness to do so.”

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Federal officials had asked Massachusetts leaders to shelter the unaccompanied minors for a short period, and Governor Deval Patrick suggested locations in Cape Cod and Western Massachusetts that could have been used to house them. The debate over their housing caused protests at Beacon Hill among those against undocumented immigrants.