REPORT: Hundreds of migrant children, teens deported under pandemic border policy

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BY TEAM DML / MAY 20, 2020 /

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The Trump administration has stepped up deportations of minors detained by U.S. Customs and Border Patrol agents along the U.S.-Mexican border amid the coronavirus outbreak and in some cases they have reportedly sent minors back to their home countries without notifying parents.

The New York Times reported that more than 900 undocumented minors have been flown to their home countries in recent weeks as the Trump administration has virtually shut down immigration, citing the dangers of the ongoing pandemic.

The article goes on to state the following:

Some children have left the country without any notice to their parents or extended families, raising questions from experts about the Trump administration’s efforts to ensure that children do not fall into the hands of human traffickers.

The New York Times report highlights the story of a Honduran woman, Sandra Rodríguez, who last saw her son Gerson, 10, when she handed him over to a stranger to get the child across the Rio Grande river in a raft. Rodriguez assumed Border Patrol would take her child to a shelter for migrant kids, where his uncle in Houston could eventually retrieve him.

The Times writes, “For six frantic days, she heard nothing about her son — no word that he had been taken into custody, no contact with the uncle in Houston. Finally, she received a panicked phone call from a cousin in Honduras who said that Gerson was with her.”

“Historically, young migrants who showed up at the border without adult guardians were provided with shelter, education, medical care and a lengthy administrative process that allowed them to make a case for staying in the United States,” the Times wrote.

Now, they are being swiftly deported by the United States amid the coronavirus pandemic.

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