Advocating for Migrant Children Seeking Protection at United States Southern Border

CHRC Report on Unaccompanied Alien Children

The CHRC recently published a report entitled A Review of Needs and Challenges Facing Unaccompanied Alien Children Released into US Communities. This document is a multidisciplinary research brief that highlights what we do and don't know about UACs integration. Read the document under in our publications section.

Letter to the White House

This past summer, the United States experienced a historically unprecedented surge of undocumented children and families seeking sanctuary and protection at the southwest border. The number of children migrating alone to the US has tripled over the last five years, with over 80,000 children apprehended this year alone, arriving mostly from Central America and Mexico. Hundreds of these children are currently in secure facilities in Chicago awaiting immigration hearings.

In July 2014, the CHRC gathered an interdisciplinary team of experts representing the fields of social work, child welfare, law, child development, and psychology to provide a research-informed response via a letter to leaders of the White House and Congress. The CHRC sent a letter to the White House, leaders of US House and Senate, Illinois Congressional representatives, ranking members of Judiciary, Homeland Security, and Appropriations Committees, and co-sponsors of two bills that were recently introduced. The letter was sent on July 23, 2014. A copy of the letter can be found here.

Collaborating faculty were Dr. Julia Pryce (SOSW), Anita Weinberg, JD, MSW (SOL), Dr. James Garbarino (CAS), and Dr. Katherine Tyson McCrea (SOSW). CHRC student children’s rights fellows, Jeanne Murray and Jade Gary, also provided critical research support and communication with external partners.

We’d like to thank our colleagues, Maria Woltjen, Young Center for Immigrant Children’s Rights, Sarah Diaz, DePaul University Asylum & Immigration Clinic, Dr. Bradley Stolbach, University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine, Trauma-Informed Care for Youth Injured by Violence Project, for their thoughtful input and review. Read the letter here, CHRC Responds to Children at the Border.

CHRC Director on Fox News Immigration Debate

On Tuesday, Dane Placko from Fox 32 News interviewed CHRC Director Katherine Kaufka Walts. The story on unaccompanied minors traveling to the United States aired on TV on Tuesday night. Also see this article on the issue, which quotes Katherine Kaufka Walts.