DMRS’ Unaccompanied Minors Program provides assistance to children, including:
- Know Your Rights Presentations- staff give group or individual presentations to newly arrived children at El Paso area detention facilities prior to each child’s first court appearance. These presentations teach the children about their rights while in detention and throughout the immigration court process.
- Individual Screenings – staff meet individually with all unaccompanied children to identify their legal needs and provide additional education regarding their rights and immigration law.
- Pro Bono Assistance and Referrals – staff recruit, train, and mentor pro bono attorneys who provide legal representation to unaccompanied children.
- Coordinated Services – staff communicate with detention facility caseworkers, Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) staff, child welfare practitioners, and immigration authorities to ensure each child’s needs are addressed.
The Unaccompanied Minors Program provides full representation to immigrant children without a parent or legal guardian who are currently in removal (deportation) proceedings. These children may be fleeing poverty, war, or other dangerous circumstances on their own, or they may have lost contact with an adult along the way. They are detained in federal custody in shelters or detention centers contracted by the Division of Children’s Services (DCS, formerly DUCS), part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR).
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