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Migrant Children Discuss Raw Food, Long Stays at Texas Facility

Plus: Migrant teens feel hopeless at emergency shelters, legacy of Trump immigration policies hurts economic growth

This summary was featured in Documented’s Early Arrival newsletter. You can subscribe to receive it in your inbox three times per week here.

In a court declaration filed on Monday, unaccompanied migrant children reported poor conditions, such as raw food, long wait times for medical attention and drawn-out stays at a temporary holding facility in Pecos, Texas. The accounts demonstrate the latest concerns raised by children housed in temporary facilities operated by the Department of Health and Human Services. A 16-year-old from El Salvador, who suffers anxiety attacks, said two kids threw up after eating one meal, which they said was “a bit raw,” provided at the Pecos site. Meanwhile a 17-year-old from Honduras discussed how they had to comfort a sibling who had been at the facility for over 60 days and had gotten depressed. CNN 

In other national immigration news…

Attorneys Say Migrant Teens Feel Hopeless at Emergency Shelters

Attorneys representing migrant children detained by the U.S. asked U.S. District Judge Dolly Gee in a 31-page filing to release them from four emergency shelters. The filing goes on to ask the Biden administration to urge the release of these minors. Gee oversees enforcement of the Flores Settlement Agreement, which sets standards for the treatment of migrant children. As of July 21, 4,578 children were detained at the Fort Bliss and Pecos emergency shelters. Many children have described feeling imprisoned, desperate and hopeless, and haven’t been able to access therapy. BuzzFeed News 

Immigration Decrease Threatens Economic Growth

Northwest Arkansas has recently become one of the country’s fastest-growing metropolitan areas, thanks to tens of thousands of immigrants coming to the area. But places like Arkansas that rely on immigrants are facing challenges for their future. According to the 2020 census, the U.S. has seen its slowest population growth rate in generations over the last ten years due to a decline in fertility rates and immigration. Northwest Arkansas companies deeply relied on immigrants until Trump administration policies cut immigration rates. Business leaders hope President Joe Biden will follow through with an overhaul of the immigration system and create a legal pipeline for foreign workers to take jobs in places that need them. The New York Times 

Study Finds Deficiencies in U.S. Immigration Coverage

In a study, Internews and Migratory Notes discovered news coverage of immigration is lacking in several areas. For example, the study found reporting mainly focused on illegal immigration and storylines where migrants lack power, and overplayed coverage of the U.S.-Mexico border. The study also found that just a small group of journalists cover immigration news, and that immigration news is overshadowed at major national news outlets. After the study, Internews recommended expanding immigration coverage, developing partnerships between mainstream and immigrant-serving media outlets, and creating global knowledge-sharing networks for immigration coverage. Deanna Garcia for Documented.

Restaurant Bringing Taste of Guatemala To Philadelphia

Sofia Deleon, a Philadelphia restaurant owner, discovered her love for cooking in Guatemala City with her nana. At 16, she started making different homemade ice creams and was able to open a small catering operation with some family members. To continue her dream, Deleon moved to the U.S. a year later to learn more about the food industry. After graduating from college, Deleon got a job in the industry, but soon saw how political divide revealed struggle of Latinos in the states. So she made it her goal to change people’s view of Latino immigrants. Deleon began doing restaurant pop ups in different areas of Philadelphia before finally opening her Central American cuisine restaurant, El Merkury. AL DÍA News

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