WAMU 88.5 : News

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Region Sees Influx Of Undocumented Immigrant Children

As of last month, nearly 6,000 undocumented Central American children had been released into the custody of relatives in Virginia, Maryland and the District. Of those, 70 percent have come to the area.

According to data from the Department of Homeland Security, three local jurisdictions account for nearly one-half of all the undocumented Central American children released into Virginia, Maryland and the District.

Fairfax County had 1,023 children, Prince George's County had 960 and Montgomery County had 816, while close to 1,100 were released to relatives in D.C., Prince William County, Arlington, and Alexandria.

According to officials who spoke to WAMU 88.5, the school systems in all those jurisdictions have seen an increase in the enrollment of Central American students. In Prince George's County, for example, 565 Central American children have enrolled this year, while 316 enrolled in schools in Montgomery County.

The numbers released by the Department of Homeland Security are subject to increase as the federal government releases more of the thousands of children currently in immigration custody.

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