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Not All Kids Are Equal: Central American Kids Get Court Dates, Mexicans Get the Boot

When I meet Kevin* inside a Tijuana shelter, he stares straight into my eyes and asks me an urgent question. Can you pass me over there?

He’s slender, 16, and the words fall from his mouth without pause. He’s been here on the Mexican side of the border for a few days now, 1,800 miles from the jagged hills and rural countryside of his hometown in the state of Guerrero. Kevin likes Tijuana; he thinks it’s grande, libre, una ciudad bella.

But he’s desperate to leave. Read more >

The Children of the Drug Wars: A Refugee Crisis, Not an Immigration Crisis

Cristian Omar Reyes, an 11-year-old sixth grader in the neighborhood of Nueva Suyapa, on the outskirts of Tegucigalpa, tells me he has to get out of Honduras soon — “no matter what.” Read more >

Why Our Immigration Courts Can't Handle the Child Migrant Crisis

As part of his proposal for dealing with the crisis of child migrants crossing the border, President Obama has asked Congress for $3.7 billion in funding that would be used for, among other things, hiring more judges for the nation's 59 immigration courts. Read more >

Bill Aims to Quicken Border Process

A bipartisan bill set to be introduced this week will treat unaccompanied immigrant children from central America the same as minors from Mexico – a legislative attempt meant to get at the root of the current crisis overwhelming the U.S. southern border. Read more >

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The Government Is Using Subliminal Songs To Scare Immigrants

Guess who commissioned “La Bestia,” a Central American radio hit about the dangers of the journey to America?

“Migrants from everywhere, entrenched along the rail ties. Far away from where they come, further away from where they go,” singer Eddie Ganz croons in Spanish over the Caribbean beat of the marimba, a wooden xylophone-like instrument from Guatemala. “They call her the Beast from the South, this wretched train of death. With the devil in the boiler, whistles, roars, twists and turns.” Read more >

Lawmakers Want to Deport Central American Kids Faster, and Obama Agrees

A year after President Obama launched his failed campaign to pass sweeping immigration reform that would have granted millions of people a path to citizenship, Congress is preparing a bill that will do just the opposite. A bipartisan proposal by two Texas lawmakers would accelerate the deportations of tens of thousands of Central American children. Read more >

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Progressive Caucus: Don't Take Protections Away From Kids To Address Border Crisis

Progressives in Congress are fighting back against growing calls to change laws meant to protect unaccompanied minors, but are up against a president, Republicans and even some Democrats who say doing so may be necessary to solve the current border crisis. Read more >

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U.S. Sued for Not Providing Attorneys to Children in Immigration Court

Immigrant advocacy groups sued the federal government on Wednesday for what they say is a failure to provide legal representation for immigrant children facing deportation.

In a class-action lawsuit filed in federal court in Seattle, attorneys for the groups allege that the government is violating due process by allowing some children to navigate the complex immigration legal system alone. Read more >

Obama's Warning: 'Right-Size' Immigration Expectations

Just after President Barack Obama had finally soothed frustrated immigrant-rights activists by vowing to use his executive power to patch the immigration system, he issued a plea of his own to the group assembled at the White House.

“We need to right-size expectations,” Obama said before stepping into the Rose Garden last week to announce that he had given up on Congress, according to multiple attendees. Read more >

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Children Shouldn’t Be Left Alone in Immigration Court

Eleven-year-old Luisa was too young to apply on her own for a visa to come from Guatemala to the United States where she hoped to be reunited with her mother. But since federal immigration authorities detained her last year in Texas, Luisa has learned that she is apparently not too young to act as her own lawyer as federal immigration officials move to deport her back to her native Guatemala. Read more >