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Legal Counsel for Child Immigrants

The Caring Cities Campaign will train attorneys who want to represent children who came to Iowa as immigrants without their parents. And the group of Quad Cities residents is inviting lawyers to learn about immigration law so they can provide "pro bono" legal services to the minors. Nearly 160 children and teenagers from Central America are now living in Iowa.

The campaign says about two-thirds don't have an attorney. Bram Elias, an associate professor at the University of Iowa's College of Law, says these children have a right to use the American legal system and remain in the country. 

Children who are re-settling in Iowa have often run away from life-threatening situations in their home countries. And he says many of the immigrants escaped domestic abuse, sexual violence, and sex trafficking. 

Child immigrants are often in danger when returning home.

Bram hopes to help make Iowa a safe place for the unaccompanied Central American kids to live and go to school. And he says the first step is to make sure legal counsel is readily available.

Elias and two other attorneys will lead the trainings, which will be held this fall.

Officially, Michelle's title for 28 years was WVIK News Editor. She did everything there is to do in the newsroom and whatever was needed around the radio station. She also served as Acting News Director from September 2023 - January 2024.