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IN THE NEWS

Keep up with recent events and news that directly affect Esperanza’s daily work. These articles highlight how the stories of migrants in the immigration system, action and advocacy, and government decisions all interact with each other. Some explain the impact of new policies on organizations like Esperanza and the clients they serve, while others serve to inform and educate people about the realities of the immigration system.

Cuestionan regla que obligaría a ICE y Patrulla Fronteriza a obtener muestras de ADN de indocumentados que cruzan la frontera

Activistas aseguran que es una medida que señala directamente a los inmigrantes y consideran que los agentes no tienen el entrenamiento necesario para recolectar dicha información.

October 21, 2019

Crea un plan familiar para el regreso a clases si estás en riesgo de deportación

Después que las redadas dejaron a cientos de niños abandonados durante el regreso a clase, te enseñamos cómo hacer un plan familiar para emergencias.

August 12, 2019

Catholic aid groups say crisis wrought by family separations far from over

When the Trump administration started to systematically separate asylum-seeker families as part of a "zero tolerance" immigration policy at the border just more than a year ago, the objective was to deter people from continuing to seek protection in the U.S.

July 3, 2019

El cierre del Gobierno deja a decenas de inmigrantes al borde de la deportación

El cierre parcial del Gobierno federal está dejando al borde de la deportación a decenas de inmigrantes que esperaban presentar sus casos frente a un juez de inmigración y no pudieron cumplir con los plazos impuestos por las cortes, advirtieron abogados de todo el país.

January 9, 2019

Panel discusses psychological impact of border centers of detained immigrant youth

Steven Shafer, supervising attorney for the Legal Orientation Program for Custodians of Unaccompanied Minors at Esperanza Immigrant Rights Project and UCLA law school alumnus, spoke at the inaugural Immigrant Youth Speaker Series, an event hosted by the Immigrant Youth Task Force at UCLA.

May 23, 2019

Advance notice of ICE raids may push immigrants toward unauthorized legal help

President Trump’s announcement of planned immigration raids in Los Angeles and other major U.S. cities beginning Sunday has heightened fears and anxiety in targeted communities, leaving many seeking legal help susceptible to scams, advocates say.

July 13, 2019

JEFF SESSIONS WANTS TO IMPOSE QUOTAS ON IMMIGRATION JUDGES. HERE’S WHY THAT’S A BAD IDEA.

In her piece, Michaels breaks down the possible consequences of imposing new quotas on immigration judges to reduce the backlog of 685,000 cases in the system. Although the new quota judges will have to meet is 700 cases per year, the current average that judges complete is 678. Michaels writes that according to Judge Ashley Tabaddor, this may mean judges can only give each case a maximum of two and a half hours, when asylum cases usually have “hundreds of pages of supporting documents and require hours of testimony and deliberation.” Importantly, not all cases are the same- some may be more complicated and require more time to prepare than others. Michaels reports on Judge Tabaddor’s comments that quotas would “[pit] the judges’ personal livelihood to mere completion of cases faster through the system, rather than making decisions that are based on the fact and the law of the case as they took the oath to do.”

April 5, 2018

SEPARATING PARENTS FROM THEIR KIDS AT THE BORDER CONTRADICTS EVERYTHING WE KNOW ABOUT CHILDREN'S WELFARE

This op-ed piece was written by Dr. Colleen Kraft, a pediatrician with 30 years of experience and the president of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Dr. Kraft shares her experience visiting a DHHS shelter for unaccompanied children, where she felt “helpless” to comfort a crying toddler who had been separated from her mother. Dr. Kraft writes that many pediatricians oppose family separation, and highlights the harmful effects it may have on the health of families. She writes, “Prolonged exposure to highly stressful situations - known as toxic stress - can disrupt a child’s brain architecture and affect his or her short- and long-term health.” When parents are unable to protect their children from these stressors, “children are susceptible to learning deficits and chronic conditions such as depression, post-traumatic stress disorder and even heart disease.”

May 3, 2018

TRUMP’S ‘ZERO TOLERANCE’ AT THE BORDER IS CAUSING CHILD SHELTERS TO FILL UP FAST

Nick Miroff reports that the system responsible for unaccompanied migrant children is reaching its capacity. Under the zero-tolerance policy, the system now includes children separated from their families upon arrival in the US. The total number of children in federal custody “has surged 21 percent in the past month.” Since the system of shelters used by the Office of Refugee Resettlement is at 95 percent capacity, “HHS [Department of Health and Human Services] is also exploring the possibility of housing children on military bases but views the measure as a ‘last option.’” The possible shortage of shelters might be exacerbated by another new policy that allows the Department of Homeland Security to access more information about sponsors that is held by HHS. Miroff writes that this change attempts “to deter parents from attempting to send for their children while knowing they can get custody with little fear of deportation.” Statistics find that recently, “the average time children spent at HHS shelters increased from 51 to 56 days.” Miroff also reports on recent comments made by White House Chief of Staff John F. Kelly, who “appeared to dismiss experts’ warnings that separating children from their parents inflicts emotional and psychological damage to the kids, saying they’ll ‘be taken care of - put into foster care or whatever.’”

May 29, 2018

JEFF SESSIONS’ DECEITFUL SPIN ON FAMILY SEPARATION

In this ACLU Speak Freely blog post, Jenny Samuels criticizes Jeff Sessions’s recent comments during an interview about the zero-tolerance policy and shares the stories of three women who are part of the ACLU’s class-action lawsuit challenging the policy. She says when “further questioned on the morality of detaining people seeking asylum, Sessions resorted to outright lies” as he claimed the problem is “people are not pursuing asylum in the correct way, by arriving through a U.S. port of entry.” Samuels disproves this by referencing two cases where mothers seeking asylum arrived at ports of entry, but were still separated from their children. In her post, Samuels also points out that Sessions did not mention “the government is refusing to give kids back to parents once they have served their time.” Samuels references a third case being represented by the ACLU, that of a mother who served her sentence for not entering the country at a port of entry, but was not reunited with her child until eight months later.

June 7, 2018

THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION’S SEPARATION OF FAMILIES AT THE BORDER, EXPLAINED

Dara Lind outlines and explains the current administration’s zero-tolerance policy. She writes that while there is no official policy to separate families that enter the US illegally, “all adults caught crossing into the US illegally are supposed to be criminally prosecuted - and when that happens to a parent, separation is inevitable,” because adults are not allowed to keep their children with them in federal jail. Although this is only supposed to affect families who enter the US illegally, there have been reports of families separated even when seeking asylum legally at a US port of entry. Between May 7 and 21, 658 children were separated from adults in prosecution proceedings. Lind reports that these children are being put into an “already overwhelmed” system for unaccompanied children in federal custody, and that “ORR [Office of Refugee Resettlement] facilities were already 95% full as of June 7.” Furthermore, there appears to be uncertainty regarding if and how families will be reunified. ICE and DHS “don’t appear to have a system to bring families back together,” writes Lind, and in many cases, parents are unable to contact their children or locate them. If this continues, there will likely be a shortage of resources in the agencies that take responsibility for these unaccompanied minors.

August 14, 2018

JUDGE REJECTS LONG DETENTIONS OF MIGRANT FAMILIES, DEALING TRUMP ANOTHER SETBACK

After a federal judge determined that migrant children separated from their families must be reunited by July 26, and by July 10 for those under the age of 5, the Times reports that the A.C.L.U believes “fewer than half” of these children will be reunited by then. Reporter Miriam Jordan writes that there are several issues delaying reunification efforts, including the government’s unwillingness to streamline the reunifiction process. To add additional comlexities, Jordan reports that “19 parents of children who are under the age of 5 have been deported.”

July 9, 2018