NPR Follow-Up Humanizes Those Border Kids Cases

As the United States punts on its obligation to deal with asylum seeking children on its southern border, a new NPR report follows up on the story of  Jose, no last name or country used for fear of gang retaliation, who is “… one of almost 60,000 unaccompanied minors from Central America now living with family and friends in the United States. Most of the youths are awaiting court hearings to determine whether or not they can stay in the country. Many are also going to school and trying to get settled in new homes and new communities.”

NPR says that “a recent study by Syracuse University found that two-thirds of unaccompanied minors do not have legal representation — and that having it makes a big difference; those with attorneys are far more likely to be allowed to stay in the United States.”

As we have noted before, immigration courts have the look and feel of regular courts, but are actually civil proceedings and the judges are actually Justice Department employees In effect, the “courts” are hearings and NPR quotes one legal-services activist saying “… these kids are facing exile and in some cases death. It’s also very hard to represent yourself pro se when you’re a 10-year-old in a new country and you don’t speak the language.”

See the story here: Many Unaccompanied Minors No Longer Alone, But Still In Limbo