EL PASO, Texas (Border Report) – A facility in El Paso privately contracted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has the second-highest number of COVID-19 positive detained migrants in the country.
The Endeavors facility at what ICE lists as the Best Western Hotel in East-Central El Paso had 42 confirmed cases under isolation or monitoring on Tuesday. That’s second only to the House of Peace contract facility in Pearsall, Texas, which had 66, according to the ICE web page. That facility is also run by Endeavors.
By comparison, the El Paso Service Processing Center only had 18 cases and the Torrance County Detention Center in Estancia, New Mexico, had eight. Like the Best Western-Endeavors, those facilities are also in the El Paso Sector.
Back in March, ICE signed a short-term contract with Endeavors to provide temporary shelter and processing services for families placed in immigration proceedings for their removal from the United States. The $86.9 million contract was for 1,239 beds and services for the families. The services include a health assessment for each family member and COVID-19 testing.
Border Report reached out to the El Paso office of ICE on Tuesday for an explanation regarding the number of cases at the former Best Western Hotel site. The federal agency directed Border Report to a March 20, 2021 statement announcing the contract with Endeavors.
ICE officials said the number of detainees at the hotel is fluid, describing it as a staging ground where migrants families are constantly coming and going.
Editor’s note: Best Western Hotel Group says the Endeavor ICE contracted facility in El Paso is “not operating as a Best Western-branded hotel.” The company says it has no affiliation with the property.
Border Report also sent an email to Endeavors seeking comment and is awaiting a response.
Endeavors describes itself as a faith-based organization set to improve “the quality of life for the vulnerable people.”