We’re used to the phenomenon of “anchor babies” here in the USA, where any expectant mother who can get into the country in time to give birth will have an American citizen for a son or daughter.
But a similar problem now exists in Germany and Austria. If unaccompanied minors get into the country, they can stay, and later bring in their parents for “family reunification”. Those kids tug at the heartstrings — they can’t be thrown out, now, can they?
Och, the puir wee bairns!
How do you say that in German?
Many thanks to JLH for this translation from Zuerst:
“Anchor” Children Become a Problem
Flood of Underage Foreigners Increases
July 19, 2014
BERLIN: A problem is making the rounds: “anchor children” — that is, unaccompanied, underage refugees brought in by people smugglers. After receiving their residence permits, they send for their parents, siblings and other relatives. Their number in Germany is on the rise.
This phenomenon is not confined to Europe, but also exists in the USA. Bypassing Congress in 2012, President Barack Obama defanged the immigration law. From that time on, young immigrants in the USA would not be sent back. Obama mandated that immigrants arriving as children or youths may no longer be deported. Furthermore, they have the right to apply for a job.
The fact cannot be argued away that Obama’s and his administration’s controversial immigration policy has been bearing fruit for a long time, in the form of increasing numbers of illegal border crossings by South- and Central Americans. Last year, new negative records were reached in connection with the problem of the “anchor children.” According to Homeland Security, over 52,000 underage immigrants without parents had been picked up along the Mexican border since October. The children and young people come mostly from Central American and are fleeing poverty or violence.
Homeland Security, which is responsible for protecting the border, has no estimate of unreported cases, and it could be in the tens of thousands, not counting the number of dead and kidnapped.
The “anchor children” who have come to Germany have no settled residence status. They are hoping for a residence permission which will allow their parents, siblings and other relatives to come to Germany without problems. Only a few of these anchor children apply for asylum. There were 2,096 unaccompanied refugee minors in 2012 — three times as many as in 2008. There are no nationwide figures for how many unaccompanied refugee minors are living in Germany now.
Since 2005, youth offices have been obligated to take children and young people into care, if they are in Germany unaccompanied. Most of the support is supplied by branches of Child and Youth Welfare.
In 2012 in Austria, a total of 1,631 unaccompanied children were apprehended by the Ministry of the Interior.