Children and Immigration: International, Local, and Social Responsibilities

21 Pages Posted: 28 Sep 2015

Date Written: 2006


This essay focuses on the human rights of immigrant children, regardless of the legality of their presence within U.S. borders, especially with respect to health, education, and welfare. In that context, the work explores, as the title suggests, the international, local, and social/cultural normative standards that structure the responsibilities -- independently and collectively, that proverbial village -- with respect to children's well-being. We develop these ideas in three parts. First, we address the foundations of the human rights idea and specifically enumerate the particular normative notions, including international treaties that govern children's lives. Next, we discuss immigration in the United States, with particular attention to the lives of immigrant children. We conclude by suggesting that the idea of a reformed social contract -- one grounded on a reconstructed and inclusive human rights idea and free from its colonial, heterosexist, racialized, militaristic, and western bias -- supports a global charge to provide health, education, and welfare protections to all children, regardless of their national status or that of their parents.

Keywords: children, immigration, social responsibilities, immigrant children, Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), human rights, International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), International Covenant on Economics, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR)

Suggested Citation

Hernández-Truyol, Berta Esperanza and Luna, Justin, Children and Immigration: International, Local, and Social Responsibilities (2006). 15 B.U. Pub. Int. L.J. 297 (2006), Available at SSRN:

Berta Esperanza Hernández-Truyol (Contact Author)

University of Florida Levin College of Law ( email )

P.O. Box 117625
Gainesville, FL 32611-7625
United States

Justin Luna


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