Wednesday, October 17, 2012
Forced From Home: The Lost Boys and Girls of Central America
Violence in three Central American countries is the primary reason behind a dramatic upsurge in the number of unaccompanied immigrant children crossing the border into the United States, and until conditions in these countries change substantially, this trend will be the new norm. The U.S. government is responsible for protecting children who are apprehended alone or without caregivers but has struggled to deal with the influx. Download Border_childrens_report_10-2012
The Women's Refugee Commission released this report. It examines the reasons behind the influx of unaccompanied children into the U.S. over the last year as well as document the inadequacy of the U.S. response to the influx. In Fiscal Year 2012, the number of children fleeing violence and poverty in their home countries and ultimately referred to Department of Health and Human Service custody after crossing the U.S. border nearly doubled, leaving officials scrambling to adequately care for their needs and ensure proper screening, assistance to legal access and reunification procedures.
The report concludes that this increase in children crossing the border may become a "new normal" and ends with several recommendations to the U.S. government on how the Departments of Homeland Security and Health and Human Services can best meet the needs of these children.