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Kos: Westover ‘Should Not Be An Option’ for Immigrant Children

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CHICOPEE, Mass. (WGGB) — Chicopee Mayor Richard Kos says that a plan to shelter unaccompanied immigrant children at Westover “makes no sense.”

Friday morning,Mass. Gov. Deval Patrick announced his recommendation for two proposed locations in Massachusetts to shelter those children, who are crossing the nation’s southern border.

One of those proposed locations is Westover Air Reserve Base in Chicopee. The other is Joint Base Cape Cod (Camp Edwards) on the Cape.

Kos says that he learned of the proposal following a call from the Governor’s Chief of Staff Richard Sullivan.

The Mayor explains that while the city is “sensitive and concerned about the humanitarian issues that have developed,” he adds that the proposal “makes no sense.”

“Westover should not be an option because it’s not an option. It’s a operational airfield without the logistics to house children and maintain its security without impacting its operation,” Kos explains.

Kos went on to say that city officials are not aware of any housing or lodging available for the children, as much of the base housing is used by military personnel.

The Mayor adds that work continues to keep Westover an important piece of the military. “We have and are continuing to work to preserve Westover for its military role both locally and in the nation,” he says.

ABC40 will continue to follow this story and will bring you the latest as it becomes available.

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