Mayor: McAllen will find a new home for immigrant respite center

Mayor Jim Darling has publicly pledged to find a new home for the Catholic Charities-run immigrant respite center less than 24 hours after city leaders ordered the nonprofit to vacate its current facility.

Darling made the remarks to Sister Norma Pimentel, executive director of the Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley, during McAllen’s State of the City address today, saying that McAllen will find a place to house the center’s operations. On Monday evening, McAllen city commissioners┬ávoted via a split decision that the nonprofit’s respite center vacate its current location in the vicinity of Hackberry Avenue and 2nd Street.

The center has accommodated hundreds of immigrants out of a 16,000-square-foot space every day since December. Prompted by growing numbers, Catholic Charities moved its downtown operations to this former nursing home.

The decision to order that the center vacate the premises, however, came after residents of the surrounding neighborhood expressed concern to commissioners over the center being located nearby their residences.

Watch the State of the City address here.

McAllen orders Catholic Charities to vacate immigrant respite center