Friday, November 13, 2015

Red Tape Slows U.S. Help for Children Fleeing Central America

By Michael D. Shearnov, New York Times
November 5, 2015

WASHINGTON — President Obama vowed a year ago to give Central American children fleeing violence a new, legal way into the United States by allowing them to apply for refugee status while in their own countries instead of accepting help from smugglers or resorting to a dangerous trek across Mexico.

But not a single child has entered the United States through the Central American Minors program since its establishment in December, in large part because of a slow-moving American bureaucracy that has infuriated advocates for the young children and their families.

More than 5,400 children, most of them trying to escape street gangs, extortion and sexual assault in El Salvador, have applied to join their parents, who are already in the United States legally. So far the Department of Homeland Security has interviewed only 90 of them, and lengthy procedures for getting airplane tickets and processing paperwork have delayed those whose applications were approved.[...]

Read the full article:

Read our April article, "US Program to Resettle Central American Minors Likely to Help Few":

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