Fed legislation would require immigration counsel for children, vulnerable adults
07/25/2018, Legislation, Immigration
U.S. House Reps. McEachin (VA-04) and Lofgren (CA-19) have introduced the Funding Attorneys for Indigent Removal (FAIR) Proceedings Act, which would require appointment of counsel for children and “vulnerable adults” in immigration removal proceedings. You can check out the bill draft or a section-by-section analysis. The Augusta Free Press has more. HR 2043 / SB 2468 (the Fair Day in Court for Kids Act, filed by Rep. Lofgren and Sen. Hirono, respectively), would do the same. And the Humane Treatment of Migrant Children Act, filed by Sen. Durbin, would require appointment of counsel just for children in immigration removal proceedings. All of these bills would also remove the language suggesting all representation in immigration proceedings is at no cost to the government.
Similar bills from prior sessions include S2540 (the 2016 Senate version of the Fair Day in Court for Kids Act), the Senate Border Security Act of 2013 (S744), and HR15 (the 2013 "Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act") which had identical right to counsel provisions as the Fair Day in Court for Kids Act. You can read an article by the American Immigration Council about a former Senate version of the Act.
The NCCRC has provided support to some who have testified on some of these bills.