Adding to the tension of the government shutdown over wall funding, sadly another child has died while in custody of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency.
The 8-year-old boy has been identified as Felipe Gómez Alonzo of Guatemala and was detained alongside his father on Dec. 18th.
On Christmas Eve, the boy was noted to have a cough as well as “glossy eyes” early that morning. He was hospitalized in Alamogordo, New Mexico and originally discharged by mid-afternoon with a prescription for amoxicillin a common antibiotic.
As the day continued Alonzo’s condition continued to deteriorate and he was readmitted to the hospital. He would pass away just before midnight.
The death echoes that of Jakelin Caal and added fuel to those who have been critical of the denial of asylum for migrants.
Democrat Xochitl Torres Small is set to oversee the district in January and called for investigations into border medical resources and the deaths of the two children.
“This is inexcusable,” Torres Small said in a statement. “Instead of immediately acting to keep children and all of us safe along our border, this administration forced a government shutdown over a wall .”
These terrible misfortunes are unwelcome by all though. “This is a tragic loss. On behalf of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, our deepest sympathies go out to the family,” CBP Commissioner Kevin K. McAleenan commented at a news release.
The CBP also released via statement that it needs other government agencies to help in the effort to provide adequate health care.
The CBP announced it would now perform medical checks on all children held in custody. To do so the CBP “is considering options for surge medical assistance” from the Coast Guard as well as getting help from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Defense, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.