Humanitarian Solution to Unaccompanied Minors’ Surge: Deport Parents, Return Children Home

Published on June 6th, 2014

By Joe Guzzardi
June 6, 2014

White House Director of Domestic Policy Cecilia Munoz vigorously insists that President Obama’s five-year long illegal immigrant coddling is unrelated to the unaccompanied minor surge that’s flooding the U.S. southwest. But Central American crossers tell a different story.

Munoz attributes the record-breaking numbers of minors overwhelming detention centers to violence and poor economies in the youths’ home countries. But the facts belie Munoz’s version. One Guatemalan informed Rio Grande Valley KRVG TV Channel 5 that back home, the word is out: “Go to America with your child, you won’t be turned away.” And Honduran Robin Tulio told reporters that: “When you appeal your case, if you say you want to study, they support you.” 

Tulio’s story is one that border patrol agents have long warned against. According to the agents, aliens who claim to be “Dreamers” must be released. In his testimony before Congress, Immigration Customs and Enforcement union president Chris Crane said that the Department of Homeland Security imposes “no burden on the alien to prove anything,” and accordingly “significant numbers” of non-Dreamers take advantage. Crane’s statements confirm House Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte’s judgment that Obama’s lax immigration policies have encouraged would be aliens to come to the U.S. on a nothing-to-lose-by-trying gamble.

Obama’s refusal to enforce existing immigration law while at the same time issuing edicts that encourage more illegal arrivals have created painful short-term consequences. 

Unaccompanied children from countries other than Mexico must be, by law, turned over within 72 hours to the Office of Refugee Resettlement, the federal agency charged with their long-term care.

But, according to DHS, minors are arriving faster than they can be processed and released to ORR. Through last week, the Rio Grande Border Patrol sector had more than 2,000 backlogged. As a result of inadequate housing, ORR sends overflows to a Ventura County, CA naval base and to a San Antonio Air Force base.  

Hard to believe though it may be, the alien incursion’s consequences will be worse for Americans over the long term than it is today. Because the minors are unlikely to be sent home, they’ll eventually need schooling which will put an additional strain on the U.S.’s already overburdened education system. Part of their instruction will include costly special classes like English as a Second Language and remedial reading. 

Analyzed by gender, boys and girls will represent different challenges when they reach adulthood. As for females, University of Pennsylvania Population Studies Center professor Emilio Parrado in his study “How High is Hispanic/Mexican Fertility in the U.S.?” found that newly arrived women have higher birth rates during their first decades in the country. A significant percentage of the women and their children will be dependent on social services.

Young, unassimilated Hispanic males represent prime recruits for street gangs. Honduras, where many unaccompanied travel from, is considered the world’s most deadly nation with an average with three murders daily. Salvadorans comprise the majority membership in U.S.’s most notoriously vicious gang, MS-13.

Tens of millions of Central Americans live in poverty. The U.S. can’t provide safe haven for all of them. If unaccompanied minors have parents living in the U.S., as they allegedly do, ICE should locate those parents and deport them along with their children. Minors who have no U.S. ties should be safely turned over to their native country’s Washington, D.C. embassies to oversee their humanitarian return home.

During his five years in office, President Obama has disregarded immigration laws and, at the same time, supported more illegal immigration. By so doing, Obama has put America’s wellbeing at risk to pursue his own misguided “welcome the world” philosophy.


Joe Guzzardi is a Californians for Population Stabilization Senior Writing Fellow whose columns have been nationally syndicated since 1987. Contact him at [email protected]  

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