WASHINGTON, DC – The Biden administration says unaccompanied migrant children who seek asylum are admitted into the U-S and are properly cared for.
However, as NewsChannel 34’s Alexandra Limon shows us, there’s one group of unaccompanied children that is excluded and almost all of them sent back to their home country.
The Biden Administration says for months the US has been meeting its legal obligation to care for unaccompanied minors who seek asylum.
“And assessing the claims for humanitarian relief,” says Alejandro Mayorkas.
But a new report from Amesty International says that’s not the case for many children from Mexico.
“The US border patrol is exploiting a provision of anti-trafficking legislation that allows for the swift return on a voluntary basis of unaccompanied children,” says Brian Griffey from Amnesty International.
Brian Griffey is the author of the report – titled “Pushed into Harm’s Way.”
He says US Border officials should be properly screening every child.
“Even Mexican officials have told us that U.S. authorities are sending back children who are not safe to be there,” says Griffey.
Amnesty International says from November of 2020 to April of this year more than 10,000 unaccompanied Mexican children were expelled and fewer than 500 admitted to the US.
“That tells me that there’s probably something missing in the screening process,” says Immigration Attorney Brandon Roche.
The US government insists that the law allows the US to treat asylum seekers from Mexico and Canada…differently than those from other countries.
Brandon Roche, an immigration attorney in Houston says even so, Mexican children have the legal right to apply for asylum.
And he also believes immigration officials may be sending too many of them from home.
“in a rushed manner and they’re being screened by officers who are probably not trained in child friendly interview techniques for traumatic type of interviews,” says Roche.