Garland’s vision of “justice” for refugee children appears to be little different from that of Stephen Miller and his White Nationalist predecessors at DOJ!
EDS NOTE: GRAPHIC CONTENT – The bodies of Salvadoran migrant Oscar Alberto Mart??nez Ram??rez and his nearly 2-year-old daughter Valeria lie on the bank of the Rio Grande in Matamoros, Mexico, Monday, June 24, 2019, after they drowned trying to cross the river to Brownsville, Texas. Martinez’ wife, Tania told Mexican authorities she watched her husband and child disappear in the strong current. (AP Photo/Julia Le Duc)
Cindy Carcamo
Cindy Carcamo
Immigration Reporter
LA Times

Cindy Carcamo reports for the LA Times: 


MAY 25, 2022 11:56 AM PT

After drug traffickers killed his little brother, William and his 6-year-old son, Santiago, fled Colombia last September to seek asylum in the United States.

Unbeknownst to William, who ended up in Los Angeles with a friend, he and his son immediately became part of a cohort of thousands of families in a “dedicated docket” program that the Biden administration established in 11 cities, including Los Angeles, in May 2021.

In response to a sudden rise of apprehensions last spring of families and children at the Southwest border, Biden promised the accelerated docket would resolve cases “more expeditiously and fairly.” These sorts of programs have existed in various forms under previous administrations; Biden’s program pushes immigration judges to resolve cases in 300 days, significantly shorter than the 4.5-year average of asylum cases in immigration court.

But according to a new Center for Immigration Law and Policy at UCLA Law report, the docket’s fast-track timeline has imposed new hardships on many asylum seekers and created additional obstacles that ultimately lead to higher rates of deportation orders, sometimes based on legal technicalities.

For William — who didn’t want his last name published, fearing reprisal against his family still living in Colombia — the docket’s expeditious nature meant he had only six weeks to secure legal representation before his first court hearing, leaving him to navigate a complex and often confusing system without an attorney. Immigration officials provided him with documents heavy with legal jargon in English. He could read only in Spanish.

In addition, those on the docket are released with “alternatives to detention,” which means they are monitored, either with an ankle bracelet or via a phone application. Immigration officials shackled William with a GPS monitor on his ankle before releasing him and his son.

Ultimately, an immigration judge ordered William and his 6-year-old to be deported in “absentia” when they didn’t show up for their court hearing at U.S. Immigration Court in downtown Los Angeles. In fact, at the time the judge gave the order, William was in the building, but was three floors below the courtroom in a waiting area at the direction of an Immigration and Customs Enforcement official. By the time William was told he was in the wrong place, the judge had already ordered the father and son’s removal from the U.S.

In Los Angeles, an estimated 99% of the 449 cases completed on the dedicated docket as of February of this year resulted in removal orders and about 72% of those cases were issued to people who missed their court hearing — “in absentia” — according to a report released Wednesday by the Center for Immigration Law and Policy and Immigrants’ Rights Policy Clinic at UCLA School of Law

Perhaps most striking, the report shows that almost half of those in absentia removal orders are for children, many 6 and younger.

In addition, court data analyzed in the report show that an estimated 70% of people on this particular docket don’t have legal counsel. In contrast, an estimated 33% of those on the Los Angeles court’s non-accelerated docket lack legal counsel.

The nature of the accelerated dockets made it nearly impossible for asylum-seekers to get a fair hearing, the report’s authors concluded. The high absentia rate, the report concluded, is a red flag that the dedicated docket isn’t working as it should.

. . . .


Read the rest of Cindy’s totally disturbing article at the link!

Sadly, this news will come as no surprise to readers of “Courtside.” Having watched these types of  efforts to co-opt the Immigration Courts as a vehicle of unfair, racially motivated “deterrence” and “enforcement,” I could see that this program was going to be an unmitigated disaster at EOIR, given Garland’s failure to install progressive judicial leadership and human rights and due process expertise into the broken and biased system he inherited from Sessions and Barr.

The NDPA is going to have to “dig in” and fight Garland and Mayorkas every step of the way, at every level of the system, to save as many lives as possible from their disgraceful continuation of a “Miller Lite” White Nationalist, anti-immigrant program of abusing and dehumanizing asylum seekers — most individuals of color and many of them children or other “vulnerable individuals.” 

🇺🇸 Due Process Forever! Garland’s dysfunctional, biased, leaderless, soul-less, ethically challenged EOIR, never!