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for reference. The original video has been deleted and is no longer available. State of Texas cuts off food funding to Dame La Mano women's shelter
By: Bill Melugin EL PASO, Texas-- EL PASO, Texas-- The Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) has cut off food funding to the non-profit downtown El Paso Dame La Mano shelter, and has disqualified its leadership from participating or being affiliated with the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP).
According to the United States Department of Agriculture, CACFP provides aid to child and adult care institutions and family or group day care homes for the provision of nutritious foods that contribute to the wellness, healthy growth, and development of young children, and the health and wellness of older adults and chronically impaired disabled persons.
According to state documents obtained by KFOX14, Dame La Mano owed more than $63,000 to the TDA in reimbursement for their non-profit food service.
As part of an agreement between the two parties, the TDA rescinded the demand for Dame La Mano to pay back that money, but cut funding to the shelter.
Rosa Arellano Cabrera, and her daughter, Rosa Arellano, the respective founder and executive director of Dame La Mano, have both been placed on the National Disqualified List for the CACFP by the TDA. They will remain on the list for seven years, or until the United States Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service says otherwise.
According to TDA documents, "Dame La Mano is seriously deficient in its operation of the CACFP, and Rosa Arellano and Rosa Arellano Cabrera are responsible for the deficiency in light of their overall management of the CACFP."
KFOX14 stopped by the shelter on Thursday to get a response from leadership.
In a phone conversation, Rosa Cabrera told KFOX14 the state's problem isn't with the shelter, but rather, with the food program.
Cabrera said she has a letter proving she doesn't even want the food funding from the state. When asked why, she reffered KFOX14 to her attorney for an answer.
As KFOX14 has previously reported, Dame La Mano was raided by federal agents in 2012 in response to allegations of human trafficking.
No arrests or charges have come out of that investigation.
According to KFOX14 media partner The El Paso Times, from 2007 to November 2011, the Texas Health and Human Services Commission investigated Dame La Mano at least four times for allegedly asking residents to buy food, forcing residents to contribute to the pantry and giving the organization part of the money they receive from government assistance programs.
But there was no evidence to prove the allegations, according to the commission. Dame La Mano officials have denied any wrongdoing.