Southwest Key to close unaccompanied minor shelter in Conroe

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Tuesday, August 6, 2019
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An unaccompanied minor shelter in Conroe is expected to close its doors in October, citing "unexpected loss of federal funding."

CONROE, Texas (KTRK) -- A shelter for unaccompanied minors is expected to close its doors in October, citing "unexpected loss of federal funding."

Southwest Keys Program told the Texas Workforce Commission 197 people will be laid off from its Conroe shelter as a result of the closure.

The Austin-based nonprofit houses immigrant children through contracts with the U.S. Office of Refugee Resettlement. It also plans to close another shelter near the border.

"Based a variety of issues, we have recently moved to terminate two of our leases, a shelter in Conroe and shelter in Harlingen named Casa Combes. Our plan is to move youth to other Southwest Key shelters," the nonprofit said in a statement sent to ABC13 Eyewitness News. "Unfortunately, this will have an impact on some of our staff. But we are working hard to minimize it."

The Conroe facility is licensed to accept 160 children and 69 children at the Harlingen facility, according to a July report from Texas Health and Human Services.

RELATED: Hundreds protest immigrant detention facilities in Houston ahead of ICE raids

The nonprofit operates several migrant shelters for minors across the state. Last month, protesters gathered at Southwest Key detention center at the corner of Prairie and Emancipation in Houston to protest President Donald Trump's anticipated round-up of immigrants living in the U.S. illegally.