Border chaos: 3-year wait for deportation hearings, just 1 in 6 minors show up

Children of Immigrants protest deportations
Children of Immigrants protest deportations

WASHINGTON (TIP): A new report on the utter chaos in immigration courts finds that the average wait time for adult illegals to get a deportation hearing has reached a whopping 1,071 days and that 86 percent of minors ordered deported are simply let go in part because they never show up for legal hearings. The Migration Policy Institute report issued Thursday said that the surge in minors flooding over the Mexico-U.S. border beginning last year has so clogged immigration courts that the system is stalled.

Starting in spring 2014 and through today, some 102,000 unaccompanied children from Central America and Mexico were arrested on the border. The surge was so big, Justice implemented a special rush system to put the minors ahead of illegal adult immigrants.

But, said the report, 61 percent of the cases involving minors were still unresolved as of August 31, and that has helped to push the backlog for others like adults facing deportation hearings to 1,071 days.

The report also revealed:

  • One in six minors fail to appear at immigration hearings and are automatically ordered deported in absentia.
  • Most deportation orders of minors go unexecuted.
  • Of 13,204 minors ordered removed in fiscal 2014, just 1,863 were actually deported.

“Most cases are still pending in the courts, while the children wait in the United States in unauthorized status. For those cases that have been resolved, the ones that ended in an order of deportation have largely been unexecuted; and of those ending in some form of relief, many children have not received lawful immigration status,” wrote report author Sarah Pierce, an MPI research assistant. “The end result is similar: The children become more fully settled in the United States-while remaining unauthorized.”

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The report also draws attention to the problems schools are having dealing with the illegal minors.

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