US expands virus testing of detained migrants amid criticism

National News

Guatemalans deported from the U.S., wearing a mask as a precaution against the spread of the new coronavirus, line up to board a bus after arriving at La Aurora airport in Guatemala City, Tuesday, June 9, 2020. The United States resumed deportation flights to Guatemala, nearly a month after the Central American country refused to accept them. (AP Photo/Moises Castillo)

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. Immigration Customs and Enforcement says it’s expanding coronavirus testing at detention facilities.

The move follows weeks of criticism that the agency’s response to the outbreak has been inadequate.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement announced Wednesday that it now offers voluntary COVID-19 tests to people held at detention facilities in Tacoma, Washington, and Aurora, Colorado.

It has tested 80% of the 570 people held at the Washington facility and one person tested positive.

Members of Congress and immigrant advocates have criticized the agency for insufficient measures to test and control the virus among detainees.

The agency reports 838 active cases among the more than 25,000 people it has in custody in about 200 facilities.

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