National Center for Youth Law

At the Center

Administration stops funding education, legal services for children in immigration custody

On June 5, the Administration announced that it would no longer provide funding for education, recreation, and legal aid services for unaccompanied children in Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) custody.

The denial of these services constitutes a clear violation of the Flores Settlement, state licensing requirements, and the United States Constitution. Educational classes and recreation are critical to preserving children’s mental and physical health while in federal detention.

Over the past few weeks, the Immigration team at the National Center for Youth Law has been in regular communication with opposing counsel, advocates on the ground, legislators and legal organizations across the country to assess the situation, evaluate the government’s position and determine next steps. Some ORR contractors have indicated that they will continue to provide these services, regardless of the Administration’s announcement, while others have not yet publicly disclosed their plans moving forward.

The National Center for Youth Law is closely monitoring the situation as it unfolds.  Should facilities cease providing these critical and legally required services, we will pursue legal action swiftly.