The Texas Independent: At least 5,100 children are living in foster care in the U.S. as a result of the detention or deportation of their parents
“El Paso and parts of the Rio Grande Valley have some of the nation’s highest numbers of children living in foster care because their parents were removed by immigration enforcement, according to a new study by the Applied Research Center, a public policy institute covering racial justice.
The institute that found at least 5,100 children are living in foster care in the U.S. as a result of the detention or deportation of their illegal immigrant parents, and almost one in four people deported in the last year were parents of a U.S.-born child.
According to its research, 7.5 percent of children in foster care in El Paso are there because their parents were either deported or detained. In the eastern Rio Grande Valley, they account for 7.8 percent of children in foster care.
For immigrant advocates like Austin-based Bob Libal, Texas senior organizer at the Grassroots Leadership, the study confirms the need to address immigration policy. His organization works to end for-profit incarceration and reduce dependence on criminalization and detention.
‘I think [the study] confirms that detention and deportation system has dramatic consequences on children of those who are detained and deported and on the social service system,’ Libal said. ‘I think we already knew that the deportation system drains a lot of resources, but now we also know that there are all these additional costs….[and] our immigration system doesn’t prioritize family unification.’”
From a story I wrote for The Texas Independent. Read more here.