The National Center for Youth Law, a 2021 grantee of the Foundation, achieved a significant victory in its case, Lucas v. Azar, pending in federal court in the Central District of California. A group of children, including one who spent nearly two years in immigration custody, brought a class-action suit against the United States government in 2018. The suit alleges the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR), which is responsible for the custody and release of unaccompanied immigrant children, employs policies that violate the constitutional rights of the children in its custody.
The federal judge held that unaccompanied children in federal immigration custody are entitled to greater constitutional protections than they are currently afforded when they are detained in restrictive placements, including juvenile jails, or denied release to family. The National Center for Youth Law attorney, Mishan Wroe, said that “the Court decision will prevent children from languishing in custody without recourse and prevent them from being unnecessarily detained in reclusive facilities without appropriate procedural protections.”
To read more details about the case's victory, click here.