CAS helping kids without status

By Gerald V. Paul

Then Children Aid Society, CAS, is helping vulnerable children, including from the Caribbean, with immigration problems when they are threatened with being reported and deported.

“We do what is in the child’s best interest. The reality is that children who lack legal residency in Canada are not immune from abuse and neglect, and can be even more vulnerable because of their precarious status,” said Ronal Ibarra, of the Catholic Children’s Aid Society.

According to Ibarra, the CAS has had cases where there is physical or neglect or the parents cannot cope with the child’s behavior, and relinquish their rights. And they have kids who are simply there by themselves.

He noted 30 per cent of his cases involved children with no status in Canada. A further 16 per cent were in the refugee application process, while the others had immigration issues such as obtaining citizenship.

“The most rewarding part of my job working with these youth is I do see light at the end of the tunnel, despite all the challenges to get them status,” said Ibarra.