Refugee Crisis

Some families split up at U.S.-Mexico border still detained months later
Associated Press
November 23, 2018
November 23, 2018 5:44 PM EST
In this Tuesday, June 26, 2018, file photo, people protest immigration separation policies outside Federal Court in El Paso, Texas. Matt York / AP
PHOENIX — Half a dozen families who were separated at the U.S.-Mexico border are still detained in Texas months after reuniting with their children.
Immigrant advocates say the government has violated a longstanding legal agreement that bars it from detaining children past 20 days in unlicensed facilities like the South Texas Family Residential Center.
The detention centre in Dilley, Texas, had been holding about 40 families for four months following the court-ordered reunifications. About 30 of the families were just released last week.
“We are still suffering because they don’t want to set us free,” said Wendy, a woman from El Salvador who arrived in the U.S. with her 9-year-old daughter in late May.
Wendy, who did not want her full name used for fear of her safety, was separated from her daughter, then reunited after nearly two months. The Associated Press spoke with her in September, and it’s not immediately clear if she’s been released yet.
Many families had spent months apart after President Donald Trump’s administration launched a zero-tolerance policy requiring anyone who crossed the border illegally to face criminal charges. That meant parents had to go to court while their kids went to shelters for underage immigrants nationwide.
The policy ended in the spring after worldwide uproar, but families with parents who failed their first screening as they sought asylum have remained in custody with their children.
A decades-old agreement known as the Flores settlement dictates how long the government can keep children in unlicensed facilities. Generally, the rule has been that kids can’t be kept past 20 days.
Families still detained in Texas said in interviews with The Associated Press that they are desperate and that their kids are traumatized.
One woman said she and her daughter kept getting sick during the rainy season because officials at the Texas centre wouldn’t let them change out of wet clothes. The dorms at Dilley are outside.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokeswoman Dani Bennett said the agency takes the health, safety and welfare of immigrants in their care very seriously. She said the agency provides comprehensive medical care, including nurses, mental health providers, doctors, dental care and access to 24-hour emergency care.
“Pursuant to our commitment to the welfare of those in the agency’s custody, ICE spends more than $250M annually on the spectrum of health care services provided to those in our care,” Bennett said in a statement.
The families who remained detained long after reunification are asylum seekers who failed what’s known as a “credible fear” interview — the first step in the process. An asylum officer interviews asylum seekers about why they fled their country, and if they can show they have credible fear of returning, they get a hearing before an immigration judge.
A federal judge ordered the government to allow those families to redo their interviews after attorneys sued, saying parents didn’t pass the initial screening because of the extreme stress of having their kids taken away.
“Every step of the way, the government has really taken its time,” said Katy Murdza, an advocacy co-ordinator with CARA Pro Bono, which provides legal services to hundreds of families detained in Dilley. “Meanwhile, there is more and more harm being done to these children.”
Bennett, the ICE spokeswoman, said the average length of a stay at the Texas centre is 17 days. She said the length of some families’ stay could be longer than 20 days depending on individual circumstances, like those who have final orders of removal from the U.S. Many of the families kept this long have such orders.
They’re likely to get another shot at staying in the U.S., though, because of the agreement that allowed them or their children to do another initial interview.
“It’s very traumatizing to be detained,” Murdza said. “We start to see behavioural regression, wetting the bed, refusing to be separated to go to school.”
Fights, escapes, harm as migrant kids lash out while detained in U.S. facilities
Associated Press
November 24, 2018
November 24, 2018 11:53 AM EST
Seven-year-old Andy is reunited with his mother, Arely, at Baltimore-Washington International Airport July 23, 2018 in Linthicum, Maryland. Win McNamee / Getty Images
HOUSTON — In one government facility for immigrant youth, a 20-year-old woman who had lied that she was 17 sneaked a needle out of a sewing class and used it to cut herself.
In another, cameras captured a boy repeatedly kicking a child in the head after they got into an argument on the soccer field.
One 6-year-old tried to run away from the same facility after another boy threw his shoes into the toilet. Three employees had to pull the boy off a fence and carry him back into a building.
Records obtained by The Associated Press highlight some of the problems that plague government facilities for immigrant youth at a time when President Donald Trump’s administration has been making moves in recent weeks that could send even more migrant children into detention.
About 14,000 immigrant children are currently detained in more than 100 facilities nationally, with about 5,900 in Texas. Many crossed the border without their parents and are having to wait longer in detention to be placed with relatives or sponsors, who are being dissuaded to come forward out of fear they’ll be arrested and deported.
Hundreds of children who were separated from their parents earlier this year were also detained in these facilities, but most of them have since been released to their parents.
Amid the global uproar over family separation, the Trump administration presented the facilities as caring, safe places for immigrant children.
But as records obtained by the AP show, the child detention system is already overtaxed. Children are acting out, sometimes hitting each other and trying to escape, and staff members struggle to deal with escalating problems.
Doctors have warned for months about the consequences of detaining children for long periods of time, particularly after most of them had fled violence and poverty in Central America and undertaken the dangerous journey to the U.S.
“Being in detention can be a form of trauma,” said Dr. Alan Shapiro, a pediatrician who works directly with immigrant children. “We can’t treat children for trauma while we’re traumatizing them at the same time.”
Southwest Key Programs, a Texas-based non-profit, operates the facilities where the three incidents occurred. In Arizona, the organization agreed in October to close two facilities and stop accepting more children at others as part of a settlement with the state, which was investigating whether the organization conducted adequate background checks of staff. One former employee was convicted this year of sexually abusing multiple boys.
Meanwhile, in Texas, Southwest Key is pushing to expand. It has sued Houston after local officials tried to stop the opening of a facility.
In a statement, Southwest Key said it reported all three incidents on its own and that it was committed to correcting any problems.
“As long as immigrant children are forced to leave their homes due to violence and poverty, we want to provide them with compassionate care and help reunify them with family safely and quickly,” the group said.
Southwest Key’s facilities are licensed by the Texas Health and Human Services Commission, which inspects child detention centres and released inspection records to the AP.
The U.S. government has also set up a temporary facility in Tornillo, Texas, that isn’t licensed by the state because it’s located on federal property. There, roughly 1,800 children are housed in large tents at much higher costs than the licensed facilities. That’s up from 320 in June, at the height of the family separation crisis.
One facility that was repeatedly flagged was Casa El Presidente in Brownsville, Texas, operated by Southwest Key.
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As parents were being arrested and separated from their infants and young children, Casa El Presidente became one of three Texas “tender age” facilities that took in their kids. A group of congressmen who visited in June said the facility had an infant room with high chairs and toys, where staff members were caring for babies.
Casa El Presidente multiplied in size during the family separation crisis. According to the state’s monthly head counts, the facility went from 56 children in June to 367 in the most recent count taken Nov. 15.
A shift supervisor told a state inspector on June 26 that more staff were quitting and that workers “struggle with implementing healthy boundaries for children of this age.”
“He admitted staff are afraid to touch the children,” the inspector wrote in a report.
The supervisor said Casa El Presidente had to change its policy on restraining young children who were misbehaving, because holding them for too short a time was “escalating instead of de-escalating.” Southwest Key said an example of a typical restraint would be holding a child’s arm or shoulder, and that it doesn’t use mechanical restraints.
The facility was cited for improperly restraining a 6-year-old boy who tried in July to climb a playground fence and run away.
The boy was identified in an inspection report by his first name, Osman. Staff members told an inspector that two days before Osman ran to the fence, two other boys had placed his shoes in a toilet. Osman “also expressed frustration about being in the shelter away from his family,” the report said.
Three staff members eventually carried Osman away from the fence and back into the building.
The same month, two boys named Luis and Franklin got into a fight after Luis apparently kicked a soccer ball that Franklin said belonged to him. An inspector who viewed the facility’s video wrote that Franklin chased Luis and punched him, causing Luis to fall.
“Franklin starts to kick him, once again making contact and kicking Luis in the face,” the inspector wrote. Employees “never make efforts to move Franklin away from Luis; the staff just hold him.”
The inspector cited the facility for not properly intervening to stop the kicks.
At Casa Rio Grande in San Benito, Texas, one of the people living there was a 20-year-old who told the staff she was 17. An investigation report identified her as Julia.
Julia told an inspector that she took a needle from a sewing class and used it to cut herself because “she felt alone.” She hid her wrist for around two weeks under a sweater, but when she forgot to wear her sweater one day, a staff member spotted the marks.
In each case, inspectors interviewed other minors detained at the facility. According to the reports, the other youth said they were treated well, had enough food, and felt respected by the staff.
Jeff Eller, a spokesman for Southwest Key, acknowledged that staff morale has suffered this year due to the unprecedented demands.
“We are against family separations at the border,” Eller said. “Keeping families together is better for the children, parents, and communities.”
Illegal border processing costs alone to exceed $1 billion, PBO report
Anthony Furey
November 29, 2018
November 29, 2018 3:34 PM EST
A family approaches the unofficial border crossing at the end of Roxham Rd. in Champlain, N.Y. (Charles Krupa/AP)
The combined costs to process the aspiring refugees crossing illegally into Canada via Roxham Road and elsewhere over a three year period will exceed $1.1 billion next year, according to the Parliamentary Budget Officer.
The non-partisan federal watchdog’s latest report released on Thursday adds up what it costs to process three years’ worth of cohorts of asylum claimants beginning in 2017 – when the border crisis first flared up.
The numbers ($340.2 million for 2017-2018, $367.8 million for 2018-2019 and $395.9 million for 2019-2020) are not the yearly costs that have already been incurred but rather the total expected to be spent over the lifespan of the asylum claim.
Costs per migrant are also expected to go up as the years go on, hitting an average of $16,666 per migrant for those that arrive in the year 2019.
“This is largely due to longer projected wait times for migrants to complete the entire asylum claim process,” the report notes. “This is a result of projected inflows being greater than the capacity of the federal organizations to process these claims, leading to greater expenses for federal health insurance costs.”
For those who exercise every step in the appeals process, are finally rejected and then deported, the cost is much steeper than the average, rising to $33,738 for a single failed claim.
The PBO report doesn’t tell the full story though. The numbers don’t include what the provinces and municipalities pay for social services for illegal border crossers.
On Thursday, Toronto released their annual Street Needs Assessment and confirmed that “approximately 40 per cent of shelter services users surveyed identified as refugee/asylum claimants.” For this reason, they’re requesting “ongoing and stable funding” to the tune of $43 million per year.
While both the City of Toronto and Ontario provincial government have complained to the feds about the burden of costs they’ve taken on, the PBO tally does not include these figures.
“Given that future transfer payments are not yet known, and the federal government is under no obligation to make these payments, the PBO is unable to project these potential costs and they are therefore excluded from the cost estimate,” the report notes.
The $1.1 billion is almost exclusively related to the policing and processing of claimants, tallying the figures received from the RCMP, Canada Border Services Agency, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, Immigration and Refugee Board and others. The only social service that’s included in the list is the Interim Federal Health Program, as it’s delivered federally and only made available to those awaiting deportation or having their claims processed.
The PBO report also offers some of the most informative breakdowns to date about asylum claimants who crossed illegally.
In terms of country of origin, while it was originally reported that Haitians made up the majority, they have now been overtaken by Nigerians. These two countries comprise the vast majority of arrivals, with people from Turkey, Colombia and Eritrea making up a small fraction.
As for age breakdown, the PBO pegs a full 85% claimants as adults between the ages of 18-59. Only 4% are 60+, with teens and children making up the remaining 10%.
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When it comes to gender, the European migrant crisis is believed to be dominated by males. But that’s not the case in Canada, where 62% of the illegal border crossers are female.
Last year the feds counted 20,593 asylum claimants being apprehended by the RCMP at unofficial ports of entry. For 2018, the count as of Oct. 31 is 17,120.
Given that the feds have offered no indication that there will be a sizeable reduction in the number of claimants for 2019, the PBO uses the previous months’ numbers to project a similar intake for 2019.
In short, the numbers aren’t going down anytime soon – not the number of people coming in and not the costs associated.
Irregular migrants on track to cost Canada almost $400 million, watchdog says
Canadian Press
November 29, 2018
November 29, 2018 5:55 PM EST
An asylum seeker, claiming to be from Eritrea, is confronted by an RCMP officer as he crosses the border into Canada from the U.S. Monday, Aug. 21, 2017 near Champlain, N.Y. Paul Chiasson / THE CANADIAN PRESS
OTTAWA — Asylum-seekers who entered Canada irregularly last year will cost federal organizations $340 million — an amount projected to balloon to almost $400 million for migrants who arrive in 2019, the federal budget watchdog says.
A report Thursday from the parliamentary budget officer calculates the average cost of each irregular migrant who arrived in Canada between April 2017 and March 2018 at $14,321.
The actual amounts vary depending on how long asylum seekers wait for their refugee claims to be finalized, budget officer Yves Giroux wrote in his report. Claimants accepted at their first hearings cost the federal government less; those who exhaust all legal avenues and are eventually removed from Canada cost more.
The PBO projects that costs per migrant will rise to $16,666 in the fiscal year ending March 2020 because of longer wait times for migrants waiting to complete the entire asylum-claim process, which will mean the federal government will be responsible for their health care for longer.
Giroux warned that $340 million or more could become an annual cost if Canada doesn’t see any decrease in the number of irregular asylum-seekers.
Canada has experienced an influx of irregular migrants through the border with the United States since early 2017, shortly after the Trump administration took steps to end temporary protected status for tens of thousands of migrants living in the U.S.
Since then, almost 35,000 asylum seekers have filed refugee claims at the Immigration and Refugee Board, Canada’s arm’s-length agency that deals with refugee claims and appeals.
A quirk in Canada’s laws means that if someone makes an asylum claim on Canadian soil, Canada has to evaluate it. The same claim made at an official crossing from the United States would be rejected on the spot. Many claimants have avoided official border checkpoints where they would have been turned back to the U.S. under an agreement that defines the United States as a country where refugees can safely stay.
The PBO says this influx of irregular migrants has placed “significant pressure” on federal resources, leading to major delays in processing times for refugee claims.
Last year, the Immigration and Refugee Board had the capacity to handle 24,000 claims but got more than 52,000 — half of which were from irregular migrants.
The federal government promised $173 million over two years to address rising costs, but Giroux said the growing backlog of claims shows that’s not enough money.
“It’s a bit like shooting yourself in the foot to underfund the IRB and other government agencies, because these kinds of savings end up increasing federal costs. So the savings, in terms of claims processing, end up costing more,” he told reporters in French.
Border Services Minister Bill Blair said the government has increased spending to deal with border crossers, but has also been streamlining the claims system to keep costs low.
“Our first obligation is to ensure that all of our processes are as efficient as we can make them,” he said. “We’ve been managing it within existing resources, and where additional resources are required, we’ll come forward with that information. But I think our first obligation is to make sure that we’re doing it efficiently, that we’re doing it at the lowest cost possible while upholding our legal obligations.”
Conservative immigration critic Michelle Rempel has been calling on the Liberals to close the loophole that forces Canadian authorities to process refugee claims from people who are already across the border.
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She blamed Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for causing the sudden increase when he welcomed fleeing migrants to Canada in response to U.S. President Donald Trump’s crackdown on immigrants, in a 2017 tweet.
“It just blows my mind that between 2017 through next fiscal year, this prime minister is choosing to spend $1.1 billion on essentially what amounts to the abuse of our asylum system. Some of the numbers in here are absolutely shocking,” Rempel said in response to the PBO report.
Blair called it “silly” to suggest a tweet sparked it all, when the United Nations has said the number of displaced people in the world fleeing persecution and violence has reached record highs.
However, Blair did acknowledge that “certain aspects” of the Safe Third Country Agreement have been “providing an incentive to individuals to cross irregularly.” He has been in discussions with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security over possible changes to the agreement to address this, he said.
“Right now, if people go to a regular point of entry, there are certain outcomes determined by that agreement. That is not in effect in other parts of our border. And so there are ongoing discussions with the United States on how, to our mutual benefit, that could perhaps be made more effective.”
The budget officer’s report only dealt with federal-government costs; provinces and municipal governments cover some, too, including welfare payments while refugee claimants aren’t allowed to work. Ontario has pegged its provincial costs for dealing with irregular migrants at $200 million. Quebec did not provide the PBO with its cost estimate, but Giroux said it likely faces similar financial pressures as Ontario.
Giroux said federal figures suggest costs for provinces and territories are at least equal to those incurred by the federal government.
7000 jobs available for them in Mexico eh?

Why keep trying to get into the US?
Yeah we should send our Irregular crossers down there it would be comical to watch migrants wanting to cross into Mexico passing those that want to cross into the States.
+1 / -1
Quote: Originally Posted by Twin_Moose View Post

Yeah we should send our Irregular crossers down there it would be comical to watch migrants wanting to cross into Mexico passing those that want to cross into the States.

Canadians from worst case Ontario should March down to Mexico and reclaim their jobs at GM.
Denmark Plans to Isolate Unwanted Migrants on a Small Island


COPENHAGEN — Denmark plans to house the country’s most unwelcome foreigners in a most unwelcoming place: a tiny, hard-to-reach island that now holds the laboratories, stables and crematory of a center for researching contagious animal diseases.
As if to make the message clearer, one of the two ferries that serve the island is called the Virus.
“They are unwanted in Denmark, and they will feel that,” the immigration minister, Inger Stojberg, wrote on Facebook.
On Friday, the center-right government and the right-wing Danish People’s Party announced an agreement to house as many as 100 people on Lindholm Island — foreigners who have been convicted of crimes and rejected asylum seekers who cannot be returned to their home countries.
The 17-acre island, in an inlet of the Baltic Sea, lies about two miles from the nearest shore, and ferry service is infrequent. Foreigners will be required to report at the island center daily, and face imprisonment if they do not.
“We’re going to minimize the number of ferry departures as much as at all possible,” Martin Henriksen, a spokesman for the Danish People’s Party on immigration, told TV 2. “We’re going to make it as cumbersome and expensive as possible.”
The deal allocates about $115 million over four years for immigrant facilities on the island, which are scheduled to open in 2021.
The finance minister, Kristian Jensen, who led the negotiations, said the island was not a prison, but added that anyone placed there would have to sleep there.
Louise Holck, deputy executive director of The Danish Institute for Human Rights, said her organization would watch the situation “very closely” for possible violations of Denmark’s international obligations.
The agreement was reached as part of the annual budget negotiations. Each year, the Danish People’s Party demands restrictions on immigrants or refugees in return for its votes on a budget.
In Denmark, as in much of Europe, the surge in migration from the Middle East and Africa in 2015 and 2016 prompted a populist, nativist backlash.
The government has vowed to push immigration law to the limits of international conventions on human rights.
Legal experts said it was too early to tell whether the Lindholm Island project would cross those boundaries, constituting illegal confinement. They said it resembled an Italian government project that was struck down in 1980 by the European Court of Human Rights.
The Lindholm Island plan furthers the government’s policy of motivating failed asylum seekers to leave the country by making their lives intolerable.
Asylum seekers with criminal records are not allowed to work in Denmark. Rejected asylum seekers who cannot be deported are given accommodations where they cannot prepare their own meals, food and an allowance of about $1.20 per day, which is withheld if they fail to cooperate with the authorities.
A former immigration minister, Birthe Ronn Hornbech, called the island project “a joke” and a blunder comparable to a soccer player scoring a goal for the opposing team.
“Nothing will become of this proposal,” she wrote in her newspaper column.
Many foreigners who have been denied asylum cannot be deported to their home countries for fear of abuse or persecution, or simply because those countries refuse to take them back.
Hundreds lingering in two deportation centers refuse to leave — a challenge for a government that has promised to get rid of those who have no legal right to remain in Denmark.
Some have held out for more than a decade despite a steady deterioration in living conditions. An independent study by a former prison director now working for the rights group Helsinki Citizens’ Assembly found conditions in one of the deportation centers to be comparable to those in some prisons, or worse.
Prime Minister Lars Lokke Rasmussen said last month that the government’s aim in receiving refugees would no longer be to integrate them, but to host them until they can return to their countries of origin.
“It’s not easy to ask families to go home, if they’ve actually settled,” he told a meeting of his party. “But it is the morally right thing. We should not make refugees immigrants.”
This summer, a ban on face coverings was introduced and quickly nicknamed “the burqa ban” as it followed a debate on the Islamic garment seen by some as “un-Danish.” This month, Parliament is expected to pass legislation requiring immigrants who want to obtain citizenship to shake hands with officials as part of the naturalization ceremony — though some Muslims insist that they cannot shake hands with someone of the opposite sex.
The government contends that hand shakes are “a basic Danish value.”

Quote: Originally Posted by Twin_Moose View Post

Denmark Plans to Isolate Unwanted Migrants on a Small Island

Socialist country.
Quote: Originally Posted by EagleSmack View Post

Socialist country.

Perhaps you want telling CC story ??? Did you even knew if Denmark ???

Your troubleness are fight race like the US and Russia of old time story even you dislike that nation I do love.
Even you don't knew Germany is big nation of the Europe with big economy and big population and stronger military than many of the world but you'll not listen to my words if Germany still strong ???
Did you liked Rap ???
You did not liked communists and race as standard Muslim ???
Standard German's communists and race.
Bist du hasst Jesus ???
Last edited by Soldier; 1 week ago at 12:29 PM..Reason: Metal vs Rap
Why did they do their newest and most expensive boat during that last NATO exercise. I don not think Russia is intimidated, lol.
You two actually understand each other.

United States

Happy countries where by here.

Quote: Originally Posted by EagleSmack View Post

You two actually understand each other.

Sheik Hussein is your innermost cycle that is hard for you recognition.
Quote: Originally Posted by EagleSmack View Post

You two actually understand each other.


Quote: Originally Posted by EagleSmack View Post

Socialist country.

The funny part is the Island is their home for disease control