39,000 illegal immigrant kids coming to U.S.
By VÍCTOR MANUEL RAMOS firstname.lastname@example.org
Many of the children coming from El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala likely will be resettled where there are established Central American communities, such as Long Island’s Nassau and Suffolk counties, said Marc Rosenblum, the report’s author.
“They are coming from similar communities and are headed to similar communities,” said Rosenblum, deputy director of the institute’s U.S. Immigration Policy Program. “The local impact is that whatever challenges school districts and local health care systems are under already are likely to increase.”
The second wave of immigrants, as some are calling it, is expected even as localities and school systems struggle to absorb about 53,500 children who arrived in the last fiscal year, which ended Sept. 30, 2014. Those minors continue to move through a multistep immigration court process to decide whether they can stay or are to be deported.
More than 3,000 of those minors moved in with relatives or sponsors on Long Island, making the region one of the top places in the nation to receive the children.
Some Long Island school districts saw enrollment spikes from the recent arrivals and felt pressured to give them needed classroom instruction and other educational services. At the same time, immigrant advocates and other groups, including New York Communities for Change and the Long Island chapter of the New York Civil Liberties Union, mobilized to protect the children’s rights.
Rep. Peter King (R-Seaford) said Wednesday that he and Rep. Steve Israel (D-Huntington) will reintroduce a proposal to send emergency funding to school districts that are receiving the young immigrants. The two co-sponsored a bill that stalled last year.
“Because of a failed federal policy, financial responsibility must fall on the federal government and not the Long Island taxpayer,” King said in a statement.
Israel Wednesday called the bill to reimburse schools “common-sense, bipartisan legislation to provide emergency relief.”
So far this fiscal year, 12,065 unaccompanied minors have been referred for resettlement by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, said a spokesman for the U.S. Office of Refugee Resettlement, which shelters the children until they are released to relatives or sponsors. About 620 of those had come to Long Island and New York City as of February — 178 in Suffolk and 113 in Nassau.
In addition to unaccompanied minors, children also arrive in the United States with their mothers or other relatives, a trend that is expected to continue. Those children are counted separately in federal statistics as being part of family units.
Victoria Campos, an immigration attorney with offices in Huntington Station, Bay Shore and Riverhead, said she has about 25 newcomers among her clients, but most of her cases are from 2013 and 2014. She has seen a decline recently, noting there is a months long lag until attorneys see new cases.
“I tend to agree that there is going to be a second wave,” said Campos, adding that “a lot of the minors that have come are here because something traumatic has happened in their lives,” and conditions in their countries haven’t improved in the past year.
They are fleeing a host of ills, including high crime, gang violence and poverty in El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala. Cities in those countries have some of the highest murder rates in the world.
The recent surges in border crossings have been felt more acutely where there were established immigrant populations.
The Hempstead school district became the focus of investigations by the state attorney general’s office and the State Education Department after advocates complained that newly arrived children were turned away from school last fall.
There are larger concerns for the region’s affected school systems, now in the midst of figuring out budget plans for the 2015-16 school year.
The US’s ‘open border’ policy has allows numerous ‘children’ into our country who while technically are children under the age of 18, are part of the extremely violent gang MS13 plus part of many drug cartels. Many Americans will be victimized and killed because of Mr. Obama’s blatant disregard for securing our border.