9:10 AM, Aug 27, 2014 • By JERYL BIER
The Immigration & Customs Enforcement agency renewed its search this week for "Transportation Services for Unaccompanied Children" crossing the border into the United States. An earlier notice posted in January of this year seeking "escort services" for an estimated 65,000 unaccompanied children raised questions about the Obama administration's prior recognition of the effect that news of its Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) plan would have on primarily Central American parents who mistakenly believed their children would benefit from the program.
The current notice says that ICE will award an "indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity (IDIQ) contract" to provide "unarmed escort staff, including management, supervision, manpower, training, certifications, licenses, drug testing, equipment, and supplies necessary to provide on-demand escort services for non-criminal/non-delinquent UAC ranging from infants to 17 years of age, seven (7) days a week, 365 days a year. Transport will be required for UAC or family groups, to include both male and female juveniles."
The documents note that the "volume of UAC apprehensions continues to create numerous operational challenges for DHS" as "apprehensions doubled in fiscal year (FY) 2012, reaching 12,000." A chart included in the documents illustrates the tremendous increase in the use of contractors to handle the increased traffic:
Fiscal year 2013 saw a ten-fold increase in the number of contractor-transported unaccompanied children, and after four months of fiscal year 2014, the number was already more than half of the previous year's total.
Another chart shows the top cities of origin and destination for the contractor-led trip. More than half originated in Harlingen, TX, very close to the border with Mexico. A little more than a quarter of the trips delivered the children to El Paso, TX.
ICE notes that under current laws and regulations, the agency:
does not have authority nor is responsible to detain unaccompanied children; rather ICE is responsible for transporting these juveniles to the Department of Health and Human Service’s Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) shelters located throughout the continental United States...
DHS places those UAC who cannot be returned immediately, as well as all UAC from countries other than Mexico or Canada, in removal proceedings under § 240 of the INA. DHS then transfers the UAC to the care and custody of ORR. ORR houses UAC in children’s shelters, staff-secure facilities, and secure facilities. ORR also maintains bed space in residential treatment facilities for children with special needs. ORR places young UAC, as well as UAC who are accompanied by their own children, in foster care, where they may apply for various immigration benefits through U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS), including asylum and other programs designed to assist victims of crime, abuse and neglect, domestic violence, and human trafficking.
This current search for contractors by ICE comes even as President Obama is under increasing pressure to make a decision on the status of millions of illegal immigrants, possibly by expanding the DACA program.
11:10 AM, Jul 6, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson explained that the immigration crisis is about the children. "We have to do right by the children," he said this morning on NBC:
8:18 AM, Jul 1, 2014 • By JERYL BIER
The Department of Health and Human Services recently recognized the RISE project (Recognize, Intervene, Support, and Empower) in Los Angeles County for its work to fight "anti-gay and anti-transgender bias" in the child welfare system in the county:
7:45 AM, Jun 27, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
President Obama addressed the illegal immigration crisis on the Southern border in an interview that aired this morning on ABC's Good Morning America:
"You mentioned immigration," said the ABC host George Stephanopoulos. "There's a humanitarian crisis on the border. Some of your critics have said you need to speak out more directly to the people of Central America and say, don't come. If you come, you will be deported."
12:56 PM, Jun 21, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
Vice President Joe Biden, speaking yesterday in Guatemala City, Guatemala, addressed the recent influx of immigrants on America's Southern border. He said a "vast majority" of these immigrants "will be going home."
8:37 AM, Jun 12, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
In an interview with President Bush's daughter, Jenna Bush Hager, President Obama said that "a lot of young men of color aren't doing well." He also talked about his own childhood, growing up without his father in his life.
4:12 PM, Feb 19, 2014 • By JONATHAN V. LAST
A couple weeks ago the great Kay Hymowitz gave New York Times readers the vapors by writing a data-driven account of how single motherhood creates sub-optimal outcomes for both the mothers and their children. The piece was titled, "How Single Motherhood Hurts Kids."
11:03 AM, Jan 22, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
In a statement marking the controversial Supreme Court ruling Roe v. Wade, President Obama says that "this is a country where everyone deserves the same freedom and opportunities to fulfill their dreams."
Here's the president's full statement:
10:19 AM, Jun 27, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
In Dakar, Senegal, speaking at the Martin Luther King Middle School, First Lady Michelle Obama likened her upbringing to the upbringing of the Senegalese children at the school. Obama told the children of her "experience," and how it was similar to theirs.
The Supreme Court rules on the 'Baby Veronica' case.
3:53 PM, Jun 25, 2013 • By ETHAN EPSTEIN
In terms of the “optics,” it doesn’t look good when you initiate a lawsuit against “Baby Girl.” But don’t let that fool you into thinking that the Capobianco family of South Carolina, who launched the lawsuit “Adoptive Couple versus Baby Girl,” and who won today at the Supreme Court, were in the wrong. They simply wanted to get their adoptive baby back. And after a three year legal battle, they have finally won.
3:02 PM, Jun 19, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
At an event in Germany, President Obama said American youth lag behind their European counterparts because they are not taught "a second and third language." Via the pool report:
POTUS opened his remarks with "Guten Abend."
To be young, Muslim, and American. Jun 24, 2013, Vol. 18, No. 39 • By PETER SKERRY
The Boston Marathon bombings highlighted, once again, the challenges of assimilating Muslim youth. And while the onus of accountability ought not rest exclusively on Muslim Americans, it understandably weighs most heavily on them. Indeed, any fair-minded assessment of recent events must underscore the inadequacies of Muslim-American leaders. Yet the usual criticisms are wide of the mark and fail to identify the institutional as well as intellectual weaknesses of these leaders.