Information on Unaccompanied Minors/Unaccompanied Immigrant Children

General information

In fall 2014, CWDA compiled state and federal resources to assist county human service agency staff as they assisted with processing and placement of unaccompanied minors and unaccompanied immigrant children due to an influx in children fleeing Central America in recent years.

Federal Information

The Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR), under the US Department of Health and Human Services, Administration on Children and Families, is the lead federal agency responsible for the initial care and placement of unaccompanied minors with sponsors. The ORR website has information including several fact sheets.

Visit the ORR website

The US Department of Education recently released the following information and fact sheet regarding educational services and educational rights for unaccompanied minors.

Read fact sheet

State Information

CDSS Unaccompanied Refugee Minors Program Fact Sheet

SB 837 (Steinberg) regarding Unaccompanied Minors was passed by the Legislature. This bill clarifies that a superior court, including juvenile court, or family court has jurisdiction to make judicial determinations regarding custody and care of juveniles and may make findings regarding special immigrant juvenile status. The bill also makes changes to confidentiality laws for unaccompanied minors. Also establishes a program of legal services for unaccompanied minors who are in the physical custody of the federal Office of Refugee Resettlement or who are residing with a family member or other sponsor.  AB 1477 (Levine) appropriates $3m for this purpose.

Relevant Media

A 10-year-old immigrant faces risks, doubts on the journey to reunite with his mother | Washington Post | September 7, 2014

Nearly 4,000 unaccompanied child migrants reunited with family in CA, half in LA County | KPCC | September 2, 2014

In Honduras, U.S. deportees seek to journey north again | Los Angeles Times series | August 16, 2014

Child’s detention despite citizenship reveals immigration case woes | Los Angeles Times series – August 14, 2014

Here’s How Hard It Is for Unaccompanied Minors to Get Asylum | National Journal – July 15, 2014