Immigration Court 'Rocket Docket' Targets Child Refugees

Immigration Court 'Rocket Docket' Targets Child Refugees

"Immigrant advocacy groups were rushing on Monday to prepare for special new court procedures in New York City next week that will accelerate deportation hearings for newly arrived unaccompanied children from Central America.

The advocates, who learned about the new procedures in the last several days, were trying to develop a strategy to respond to the shift, including recruiting and preparing pro bono lawyers and searching for additional financing to support their efforts.

“This has hit us like a hurricane or a tsunami or whatever you can call it, because we’re already overwhelmed with cases,” said Jojo Annobil, who leads the Immigration Law Unit at the Legal Aid Society. “It will need all hands on deck.”

Under the new procedures, unaccompanied minors and families with children who entered the United States in recent months during a surge of illegal migration from Central America will be moved to the front of the line to go before immigration judges." - New York Times, Aug. 5, 2014.