Feds: No More Education, Legal Services for Immigrant Kids
Authors: Astrid Galvan, Adriana Gomez Licon, Associated Press
PHOENIX — The federal government has stopped paying for English-language courses and legal services at facilities that hold immigrant children around the country, imposing budget cuts it says are necessary at a time when record numbers of unaccompanied children are arriving at the border.
The Health and Human Services department notified shelters around the country last week that it was not going to reimburse them for teachers’ pay or other costs such as legal services or recreational equipment. The move appears to violate a legal settlement known as the Flores agreement that requires the government to provide education and recreational activities to immigrant children in its care.
But the agency says it doesn’t have the funding to provide those services as it deals with a soaring number of children coming to the U.S., largely from Central America.
It’s now up to the various nonprofit and private organizations run facilities for the children to cover the cost of teachers, supplies, legal services and even recreational activities and equipment — if they can, or choose to.