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The Sacramento Bee
September 7, 2014

San Francisco immigration court a window to children’s crisi
By Susan Sward

Last month, Gov. Jerry Brown, Attorney General Kamala Harris and lawmakers proposed legislation providing $3 million for legal help for unaccompanied minors in the state. In another development, San Francisco will be providing $100,000 this year for pro bono lawyers representing people in the city who are facing deportation, including families with children. A statistical review by Syracuse University’s Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse has demonstrated just how important lawyers are in the mix. “The university’s analysis has shown that for the San Francisco court, 58 percent of the time juveniles represented by lawyers in immigration court get to stay in the United States while 86 percent of those without lawyers are sent back home,” said Susan Long, co-director of the clearinghouse program and an assistant professor of managerial statistics at Syracuse. A TRAC study also found that, as of June 30, there were almost 2,000 cases pending in San Francisco’s immigrant court that involved unaccompanied juveniles. Nationwide, juvenile cases in immigration courts end with deportation orders 77 percent of the time when no lawyer represents the juvenile; when an attorney represents the juvenile, only 28 percent culminate with a deportation order.

Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, Syracuse University
Copyright 2014
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