News / USA

Activists Question Treatment of Undocumented Immigrants

Americans Debate Undocumented Migrants’ Fatei
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July 04, 2014 2:18 PM
Immigrant rights groups are questioning the treatment of undocumented migrants, including many children being held in detention in the Southwestern United States. Others are demanding an end to illegal immigration, with protesters in California on Tuesday blocking busloads of migrants being transported for processing.

VIDEO: Immigrant rights activists in California blocked busloads of migrants being transported for processing. Mike O'Sullivan has more from Los Angeles.

Mike O'Sullivan

Immigrant rights groups are questioning the treatment of undocumented migrants, including many children being held in detention in the Southwestern United States. Others are demanding an end to illegal immigration, with protesters in California on Tuesday blocking busloads of migrants being transported for processing. Demands are rising for Washington to fix the problem.

More than 52,000 unaccompanied children are among the illegal migrants detained since October while crossing the U.S.-Mexico border. President Barack Obama has called it a humanitarian crisis.

On Tuesday, protesters angry with the influx of immigrants blocked three busloads of detainees, including families and children, en route to a Border Patrol processing center in Southern California. “Go back!” they shouted.

Thursday in Los Angeles, Latin American immigrants met outside the Mexican consulate in Los Angeles to urge Mexico and the United States to safeguard the rights of families and children.

“Please, both governments,” said Saladoran-American activist Isabel Cardenas, “… make sure that these children are protected.”

Two undocumented immigrants, over 18 and classified as adults, took part in a news conference to describe their three months in custody at a privately run detention center in San Diego. Released and awaiting hearings on their immigration status, they met with reporters at the offices of the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles.

One is Yordi Cancino, 21, who graduated from high school in the United States and whose mother still lives in Los Angeles. Immigration officers urged him to sign papers submitting to deportation, he said.

“I even told the officer, 'Hey, let me read that paper. I'm not going to sign something that I really don't know what it's about,'” Cancino recalled. “She said, 'Oh no, sign this paper. Your process is going to be fast, and everything will be perfectly fine.' I said, 'If you're not letting me read in reality what I'm signing, I'm not going to sign.'”

Activists say they wonder who will protect the rights of minors now in custody.

“If adults are being yelled at and insulted on a daily basis, that just is par for the course on how they're going to treat young people,” said Xiomara Corpeno, an activist with the Los Angeles coalition.

U.S. officials say they are doing their best to ensure proper treatment for the young people and families awaiting asylum hearings. Most of the young migrants come from Central America and may be placed with relatives in the United States temporarily. But many are likely eventually to be deported.

President Barack Obama is asking Congress for $2 billion to deal with the crisis, and he says comprehensive immigration reform is the only long-term solution.  House Republican leader John Boehner says that will not happen this year and says Republicans want more security on the border.

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Comment on this forum (4)
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by: Not Again from: Canada
July 07, 2014 12:35 AM
The World is witnessing a tremedous tragedy = children being separated from their parents. This situation will have a traumatic lasting negative effect on the children. The issue has been politicized and it is, in some quarters, all about putting the blame on the Obama administration, as usual, without any constructive proposals, also as usual. Everyone has neglected to look at what is in the best interest of the emotional and mental wellbeing of the children, and that is = for the children to be reunited with their parents ASAP.
The number one priority should be to fully identify the children and the parents, and return the children into the care and custody of the parents at the earliest possible time; if the parents are already in the US deliver them, use the normal processes to deal with the required follow up; if the parents are in a foreign country, make the arrangements and get them back to their homelands. Delivering children to others may be assisting in the illegal human traffic business.


by: Ian from: USA
July 04, 2014 1:37 PM
"Immigrant rights groups are questioning the treatment of undocumented migrants, including many children being held in detention in the Southwestern United States."

Shouldn't they pose their questions to the parents who shipped children to our border .


by: ShuMot from: Brooklyn, USA
July 04, 2014 11:17 AM
Undocumented immigrants means ILLEGAL ! I came here in 1978 as a LEGAL immigrant, was sponsored by a private org and a family member who was responsible for my well being, never received SSI, foodstamps, etc. My parents worked since day 1 in this country, why do we, as a nation, have to sponsor those that come here illegally ? US of A is a "land of opportunity" but immigrants rape our nation by taking advantage of the social system here receiving benefits and education on top of working for cash in various businesses. I, for one, is for sending illegals back.

In Response

by: neil from: phx az
July 04, 2014 11:37 AM
legal immigrants helped build this country illegals are destroying it send them all back

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