Symposium on the Child Immigration Convenes at the University of Maryland

by JASMINE PELAEZ

Rise Above Week came to a close Thursday night with the Symposium on Child Immigration Crisis event at McKeldin Library.

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The Symposium on Child Immigration panel (Jasmine Pelaez/Pulsefeedz)

The symposium was lead by a distinguised panel of speakers, each with their own personal experience dealing with the issue of child immigration. These speakers included:

  • José Antonio Tijerino, president and CEO of the Hispanic Heritage Foundation
  • Kathryn M. Doan, executive director of Capital Area Immigrants Rights Coalition
  • Abel Núñez, executive director of CARECEN
  • Ana Sol Gutiérrez, Maryland House of Delegates member

The event was centered on highlighting the growing concern of child immigration, in which Doan noted that “a lot of the kids are coming to Maryland.”

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Executive director of the Capital Area Immigration Rights Coalition, Kathryn M. Doan.

Doan gave an insightful outline of just what the CAIR Coalition does for child immigrants, of whom she prefers to call “refugees.”

Doan stated that a refugee in this country has limited options. Due to their lack of citizenship, they are left without council, and that is when CAIR steps in.

“These are children without choice,” Doan stated, “We have obligations as a civilized society to help.”

The following speakers spoke on the theme of humanitarian acts for the children that often turn to immigration, not for economic prosperity, but due to the overwhelming amount of violence in such countries.

Ninety-eight percent of cocaine passes through Honduras, Nunez noted, which more often than not creates the environment for gang activity.

“We need to rise above the anti-immigration sentiment,” he expressed.