Two whistleblowers claim the Department of Health and Human Services instructed them to downplay a coronavirus outbreak among migrant children at a facility in Texas
Two whistleblowers have accused the US Department of Health and Human Services of directing them to downplay the severity of a coronavirus outbreak among migrant children at a federal facility in Texas.
Arthur Pearlstein, a director at the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service, and Lauren Reinhold, an attorney-adviser at the Social Security Administration, detailed their allegations in a complaint sent to four Congressional committees and government watchdogs on Wednesday.
They said the outbreak erupted at the Fort Bliss Emergency Intake Site, near El Paso, between April and June of this year.
The report describes how COVID-19 cases ran rampant with 'hundreds of children contracting the disease in overcrowded conditions which eventually spread to many employees'.
'Every effort was made to downplay the degree of COVID infection at the site, and the size of the outbreak was deliberately kept under wraps,' Pearlstein and Reinhold wrote in the report.