Child Immigration

Many children everyday enter America illegally. About one in every six thousand illegal immigrants is a child (Pew Study). Which is a lot once you hear that there are about 11 million illegal immigrants here.The cross over the border is treacherous and dangerous. Many who try get lost in the desert and suffer from dehydration and heat stroke, or they are possibly caught, harrassed and abused by border patrol (Border crossing and human rights), or they are smuggled in cars and suitcases for hours on end, and the list goes on and on(deadly crossings).

If they arrive safely, they may face persecution, ostracism and poverty because they don't know the language and their parents can't apply for good paying jobs without citizenship. Many of these children live in low class urban neighborhoods with high crime rates. In school they are ignored or made fun of because they are the minority. For many, the security and power of a gang is the best choice (gangs and youth violence).

According to a ruling by the Supreme Court in 1982, all children, whether documented or not, are allowed to attend public school as long as they meet the age and residency requirements of that state. In New York in late August, a memo was sent around all the school districts informing them not to ask for any information from students that could reveal their immigration status. They feared that if the students thought that their immigration status would be discovered they would no longer attend school (NY asks schools to avoid pupil immigration status). The state of Georgia is considering not allowing illegal immigrants to attend any public colleges that don't have enough space to admit all eligible applicants. "These are young people who aren't here by their own choice. They have played by our rules. They have succeeded by our rules. For eveything we stand for as a people, they should be able to continue their development in this country," said John J. DeGioia, president of Goergetown University (a dream come true). A new act being debated in Washington called the Dream Act would grant citizenship to those who have lived in the United States for at least five years, arrived before the age of 16, graduated high school, and completed two years of college or military service(passion and politics on immigration act).

About seven years ago Monica Castro and her daughter's father got into a violent argument days before her daughter Rosa's first birthday. She left without her daughter for fear of Mr. Gallardo. She went to the local border patrol station and asked for help getting her daughter back in exchange for information on the immigration status of Rosa's father. The government ended up deporting Rosa with her father back to Mexico before her mother could act. Ms. Castro was told that her daughter was in Juarez, Mexico, a higly dangerous area. Four years ago
Rosa and her mother Monica Castro in Juarez
Ms. Castro was able to see her daughter for the first time at the United States Consulate in Juarez, but little Rosa did not recognize her mother and cried to her grandmother with which she had been living for the past three years. Now, Rosa is a happy 7 year-old living with her mother in Corpus Christi. The judge who orignally presided over Ms. Castro's case against the government said recently that, "No one is pleased that Castro did not see her daughter for three years" (Family Fight, Border Patrol Raid, Family Deported).
For more information on immigration here and around the world check out the Migration Immigration Source website for easy to read articles, charts and graphs,or the International Organization for Migration website for a more scientific approach.Alex Leone