Undocumented Girl In Federal Custody After A Surgery
An undocumented 10-year old girl with special needs was taken into the United States Customs and Border Protection custody. This was shortly after an emergency gallbladder surgery in Texas. It was on Tuesday that Rosa Maria Hernandez and her cousin, a U.S. citizen, had to go through a checkpoint of Interior Border Patrol in an ambulance.
This is to get to a Corpus Christi hospital for an emergency gallbladder surgery from Laredo, Texas, according to the family lawyer Leticia Gonzalez. However, along the major thoroughfares leading away from the border in the Southwest, the Customs and Border Protection run their checkpoint to check the vehicles and travelers for legal authorization to enter the United States territory.
The undocumented Rosa Maria underwent surgery as Border patrol agents have followed her when they found out that she has no documents.
According to Gonzalez, the agent remained at the hospital until the girl was discharged from their custody. The agency also stated that agents have really ‘escorted’ the pair to the hospital. Rosa Maria is now in a shelter that is run by the Office of Refugee Resettlement that is under the Department of Health and Human Services. This is customary when dealing with cases such as undocumented and unaccompanied minors.
It is unclear when she will be released and what will happen to her and she remains to be without her parents, according to Gonzalez.
The supporters and family characterized the apprehension as unnecessary and cruel but the official’s immigration says that the procedures they have done were routine enforcement of the immigration laws of the nation. Rosa Maria was 3 months old when she came to the United States from Mexico. Rosa Maria was found to have cerebral palsy with a mental capacity half her age according to her mother, Felipa De La Cruz. The mother said that her daughter does not understand what’s happening.
De La Cruz doesn’t know whether her daughter will ever be able to return to Laredo and she was only able to video chat with her in the children’s home. There were four federal agents stationed outside her open hospital room door while she was recovering in the hospital and never allowed the cousin of Maria to close the door for privacy. The privacy was finally allowed when Gonzalez arrived and cited the privilege of client-attorney privacy.
The lawyer stated that the agents followed anywhere the child went, even within the hospital for studies to surgery.
In Customs and Border Protection’s Statement, they said that the border patrol agents escorted her and her cousin to a Corpus Christi hospital where she could receive appropriate medical care due to her medical condition. According to the immigration laws of the United States, she will be processed accordingly once medically cleared. They also advised the Mexican Consulate about the situation by the Laredo Sector Border Patrol.
Health and Human Services have also stated that it “does not identify individual and will not have any comment on cases that are specific. Rep. Joaquin Castro, D-Texas, have lambasted the Trump administration that a lot of people that pose no threat to national security are being deported.
The Department of Homeland Security claims that they are prioritizing their apprehension but Rosa Maria is not a threat to the safety of anybody.
An official of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement said that the agency had no involvement in this specific case but it has, however, a sensitive location policy that prohibits routine enforcement arrests in hospitals, schools, and churches. That policy is different from Customs and Border Protection’s enforcement on their checkpoints where the travelers must show the proper documentation.
The child’s 85-year old grandfather is a legal permanent resident for 45 years. He petitioned the Customs and Border Protection for the custody of his granddaughter. Unfortunately, his request was denied.
The Office of Refugee Resettlement has procedures for finding sponsors and guardians to whom they can release the custody of the minor.
The papers of hospital discharge indicate that due to the special case and the girl’s diminished mental capacity, the care she needs should come from the people she knows and comfortable with, according to her lawyer.
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