AMERICA/UNITED STATES - "Looking for a lawyer to represent undocumented children"

Saturday, 26 July 2014

Dallas (Agenzia Fides) - A campaign to recruit volunteers and lawyers ready to commit to help the children stopped at the border with Mexico has started in North Texas.
The Catholic Church in North Texas, in the person of the bishop of the Diocese of Dallas, Mgr. Kevin Joseph Farrell, launched an appeal to address the humanitarian emergency concerning the flow of children and young people who arrive at the border alone and without documents. "For a community of faith, at the moment" said Mgr. Farrell, as reported in a note sent to Fides by local sources "the issue is not limited simply on a political debate on immigration, but on the urgent help towards those most in need. "We, the Bishop added, referring to the United States "are the number 1 country in the world when it comes to helping people".
In front of reporters, the Bishop also responded to questions about the deployment of National Guard troops at the border announced by Governor Rick Perry. "I am sure that the governor has his own reasons for sending 1,000 troops to the border area", said Mgr. Farrell. "But this does not solve the problem at the moment", said the Bishop "but as a Church, we are now worried about the children ... This is a humanitarian crisis that will judge the character and moral level of our nation".
The flow of migrant children, coming mostly from Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala who arrive at the border with the United States is reaching record levels. The U.S. Bureau of Customs and Border Protection reported that 57.525 children were arrested between October 1, 2013 and June 30, 2014. This figure shows an increase of 106 percent compared to last year, when border authorities arrested 27,884 children.
The campaign started two days ago by charity groups (Catholic Charities of Dallas), the association of the Hispanic Bar Association of Dallas and from the same diocese. Its aim is to recruit bilingual volunteer lawyers to assist the children cost-free whose cases are discussed at the immigration courts. About 160 lawyers have already voluntarily joined the initiative. (CE) (Agenzia Fides 26/07/2014)