Fact Sheet: Unaccompanied Children from Central America   [open pdf - 0B]

"The Administration remains greatly concerned by the rise in unaccompanied children from Central America who are crossing into the United States. These children are some of the most vulnerable, and many become victims of violent crime or sexual abuse along the dangerous journey. There has also been a rise in the number of very young children, female children, and adults with their children that are making the journey. The vast majority of these individuals rely on dangerous human smuggling networks to transport them up through Central America and Mexico. To address the situation, the President directed the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency to coordinate a government-wide response to this urgent situation. Our first priority is to manage the urgent humanitarian situation by making sure these children are housed, fed, and receive any necessary medical treatment. We also are taking steps to improve enforcement and partnering with our Central American counterparts in three key areas: combating gang violence and strengthening citizen security, spurring economic development, and improving capacity to receive and reintegrate returned families and children. In Guatemala, the Vice President is meeting with regional leaders to address the rise in the flow of unaccompanied children and adults with their children to the United States, to discuss our work together with the countries of Central America, and to discuss our efforts to help address the underlying security and economic issues that cause migration."

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White House Office of the Press Secretary: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/
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