NEW YORK (FOX5NY.COM) - Some of the children separated from their migrant parents at the southern U.S. border are being sheltered in New York. The mayor visited an East Harlem agency helping with foster care for hundreds of these kids.
"I'm shocked to have learned here today there are now 239 children right here," Mayor Bill de Blasio said. "The youngest to come here, they told us, was 9 months old."
Some of those children arrived in the middle of the night at the Cayuga Social Services Center in East Harlem.
The outraged mayor blasted the Trump administration, saying it intentionally did not tell the city that children separated from their parents at the border were being shipped to federally funded centers.
"Come clean with the truth," de Blasio said. "How is it possible that none of us knew there were 239 kids right here in our own city."
One of the children is a 9-year-old boy named Eddie from Honduras. The mayor spoke with his aunt and grandmother, who are worried. His mother was detained in Texas. The mayor said Eddie was put on a bus for a 2,000-mile trip to New York.
The children are receiving services and attending classes at Cayuga during the day. At night, they are staying in individual foster homes.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo is moving forward with his lawsuit against the Trump administration for violating the rights of the parents and children. He said the president's executive order on Wednesday afternoon does nothing to change the status of the thousands of children separated from their parents. In other words, they still will not be reunited with their parents for weeks or even months.
Dr. Ben Michaelis, a psychologist, told Fox 5 that the emotional trauma of being separated from their parents and surrounded by strangers will have a lifelong impact on the children.
"Safety is critical for all relationships—for friendships, for romantic relationships," Michaelis said. "And the sense of trauma or abandonment that can happen from this type of event can have consequences for relationships throughout people's lives."