IMMIGRATION

Immigrant children pose humanitarian crisis

 
 
 <span class="cutline_leadin">IMMIGRANTS:</span> Adults hoist a child onto the train that migrants call ‘The Beast’ as it heads northward toward the U.S./Mexico border.
IMMIGRANTS: Adults hoist a child onto the train that migrants call ‘The Beast’ as it heads northward toward the U.S./Mexico border.
Keith Dannemiller / Photo courtesy of the International Organization for Migration. ©2014 IOM

tpadgett@wlrnnews.org

We thought we had the border licked.

Both President Obama and his Republican opposition had been patting themselves on the back of late for making the 2,000-mile-long frontera between the United States and Mexico more forbidding for undocumented migrants. Fewer and fewer had been crossing each year, because of beefed-up border security and because Obama had made a policy of deporting indocumentados in record numbers.

And then a bunch of Central American kids had to spoil the celebration.

They had to give us a reality check — and remind us that no matter what we do on the border, or how many migrants we boot back south, those folks will come if they’re desperate enough. They will come. Period. Punto.

The U.S. Border Patrol is suddenly detaining an exploding number of unaccompanied children crossing into this country. It was fewer than 14,000 in 2012, then almost 25,000 last year. More than 60,000 are expected this year. And those are just the kids who get caught.

Tim Padgett is WLRN’s Americas editor. To read the full article go to WLRN.org. See more of Keith Dannemiller's migrant photos.

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