Godoy Olivieri, Ltd.-An immigration law firm
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Startling report: Minors placed in adult immigration detention

Over the last few months, the use of and practices inside immigration detention centers have received considerable attention. Detention facilities in Illinois have also been the subject of scrutiny among immigrants in the area, in part because immigration arrests split up families. As immigration reform talks move forward, detention is likely to be included in discussions.

A recent study conducted by the National Immigrant Justice Center brings one major concern into the spotlight: the handling of unaccompanied children in deportation proceedings. The study found that at least 1,300 minor children were detained in facilities intended for adults over a four-year period. In these instances, the children spent at least three days in these facilities. Typically, minor immigrants without documentation are supposed to be transferred into the custody of federal Health and Human Services officials if they aren't accompanied by a parent or adult guardian.

This report shows just how problematic the immigration system currently is. Not only is the federal government failing to enforce their own policies and potentially endangering children in the process, but these policies can keep children separated from their families. If only one member of a family is facing immigration challenges in detention, his or her loved ones must put their lives on hold while proceedings are pending.

By failing to properly handle children involved in immigration proceedings, the most vulnerable of undocumented immigrants may be left without adequate access to legal counsel. As such, family members may wish to do what they can to provide assistance to minors dealing with immigration issues. The hope is that positive changes are made to help support immigrant children and their families.

Source: Deseret News, "Immigrant minors held in adult detention centers, study says," Devon Merling, June 7, 2013

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Godoy Olivieri, Ltd.-An immigration law firm

2021 Midwest Road
Suite 200
Oak Brook, IL 60523
312-445-0591 local
800-264-2752 toll free
630-705-5258 fax
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1655 S. Blue Island Ave.
Suite 300
Chicago, IL. 60608
312-445-0591 local
800-264-2752 toll free
630-705-5258 fax
Map & Directions