NEW YORK – The Department of Homeland Security ends a program that gave minors fleeing violence in Central America an opportunity to come to the United States.
The Central American Minor Program was offered to children even if they were not able to attain refugee status. It was started in 2014 under former President Barack Obama. It was created as a response to a flood of unaccompanied minors who arrived at the U.S. border with Mexico hoping to be welcomed in to the United States.
In order to stem the flow of children making the dangerous journey to the U.S. – Mexico border, the Obama administration created the program to allow children under 21 with parents lawfully in the United States an opportunity to apply for refugee resettlement without having to leave their home country.
Those children who did not qualify for refugee resettlement could then apply for humanitarian parole which would still allow them in to the country legally. That portion of the program was eliminated.
An executive order signed by President Donald Trump in January led to the termination of that part of the program.
As of early August 2017, 1,500 children had been accepted in to the United States through the CAM program, according to the State Department.