Friday, August 01, 2014

Failing Migrant Children

Two weeks ago I made the point that child migrants really needed legal representation to have a chance at obtaining asylum. Now it seems they won't because the government is speeding up their hearings without helping them find the legal assistance required to have a chance:

The biggest worry is that children might not receive proper notice of hearings, and could wind up getting a deportation order if they fail to show up, immigration lawyers said. Advocates also say there aren’t enough pro-bono immigration lawyers to go around and that it takes longer to prepare children’s cases because it takes time to earn their trust.

“When the hearing date is three months out, it’s no big deal — it’s plenty of time to get yourself a lawyer. When it’s three weeks, that’s nowhere near enough time,” said Simon Sandoval-Moshenberg, an attorney with the Legal Aid Justice Center in Falls Church, Virginia.

This is shameful. There's really no other word for it. The message seems to be that if we kick children out before they know their rights, we can make the problem go away! Let Central America deal with them.

Meanwhile, Congress is so dysfunctional it can't pass anything. Not even a bad bill--just nothing. So one of the richest, most powerful countries, itself made up of immigrants, is throwing up its hands and saying it just doesn't know what to do. Now that's exceptionalism!


Anonymous,  12:33 AM  

I agree and it's damn right shameful how convoluted the immigration debate has gotten. 1 side just keeps pounding the "secure our borders 1st" drum no matter how misguided when you consider all the stuff you've sited already. Meanwhile they won't pass a bill, won't let them get educated, won't let hard working families have peace of mind, won't provide any sort of stability. Are we going to wake up 1 day a population in decline with a huge immigrant population under educated and unassimilated? Where is common sense? Where is the human decency? No argument matters to these people. It's crazy.

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