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U.S. Aims to Deter Dangerous Travel by Central American Children

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Today, we are announcing the restarting of the Central American Minors Program for children to be reunited with a parent who is legally in the United States. This program was ended abruptly by the previous administration, leaving around 3,000 children already approved for travel stranded. In Phase 2, we’ll be working to improve the CAM program to expand safe and legal avenues for — to the United States. I want to be clear, neither in this, neither this announcement nor any of the other measures suggest that anyone, especially children and families with young children, should make the dangerous trip to try and to enter the U.S. in an irregular fashion. The border is not open. Going forward, we will continue to look for ways to provide legal avenues in the region for people needing protection, while we continue to enforce our laws. The president has committed to seeking $4 billion over four years to address the root causes of migration, including corruption, violence and economic devastation exacerbated by climate change. As part of that plan, we will address the causes that compel individuals to migrate, including improving governance and providing a foundation for investment and economic opportunity, strengthening civilian security and the rule of law. Working across the whole of government, we will look at access to international protection and refugee resettlement. And rethinking asylum processing to ensure fair and faster consideration. Only by addressing those root causes can we break the cycle of desperation, and provide hope for families who clearly would prefer to stay in their countries and provide a better future for their children.

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