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Questionnaire for Minor Visa 93 Beneficiaries


R 011716Z JUL 03
FM SECSTATE WASHDC
TO ALL DIPLOMATIC AND CONSULAR POSTS
SPECIAL EMBASSY PROGRAM
AMEMBASSY DUSHANBE
AMEMBASSY KABUL
AMEMBASSY KHARTOUM

UNCLAS STATE 189805


E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: CVIS, PREF
SUBJECT: QUESTIONNAIRE FOR MINOR VISA 93 BENEFICIARIES

REF: STATE 142072

1. This telegram has been cleared by SEP.

2. Please note: Consular officers interviewing minor (less than 18
years of age) children who are Visa 93 beneficiaries travelling
alone to the U.S. without a parent, must complete the questionnaire
provided below and attach the responses to the refugee biographic
data form. This is not required if the minor beneficiary is
travelling with a parent. The questionnaire must be submitted along
with the biographic data form in order for the case to be processed.
The questionnaire can be located at www.wrapsnet.org.
Justification for this required action follows:

3. The Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration''s (PRM) Office
of Admissions has responsibility for ensuring appropriate placement
of minor refugees resettled in the U.S. through the U.S. Refugee
Resettlement Program. We work with resettlement agencies to
determine the best living situation for minors. In the recent past,
PRM has become aware of several cases in which children were
destined to be reunited with parents under visa 93 procedures. Upon
arrival, however, it was learned that the parent had died or was
unfit to care for the child. In one case, the father of four
children died one year before his children arrived in the U.S. Once
authorities discovered that the father was dead, the children were
placed in U.S. foster care, although their mother was alive and well
in Vietnam. The case was reported to INS who undertook deportation
proceedings because the children were actually ineligible to enter
the U.S. after the parent/petitioner had died. In an effort to
ensure children are resettled under appropriate circumstances, PRM
has developed a questionnaire to assist consular officers in
gathering information that will be used to clarify parental
oversight and to facilitate resettlement planning for the children.
Resettlement workers will refer to the consular officers'' responses
when conducting a visit to the home of a petitioning parent to
determine appropriate placement. Verification of answers by the
visiting worker to the questionnaire will also help in minimizing
instances of fraud or ineligibility.

4. Consular officers should include responses to the following
questions:

-- What is known about the parent(s)?

-- How long has it been since the last contact between the minor
and the parent (petitioner) in the U.S.?

-- Why was the minor separated from the parent?

-- Who is the primary caregiver for the minor (at the time of
consular officer interview)?

-- How long has this caregiver been responsible for the minor?

-- What authority designated responsibility for the minor to the
caregiver?

-- Is there any other information in the minor''s background that
would be useful to know
when determining resettlement appropriate services for the
child?

5. The Department acknowledges the fact that consular officers are
very busy. However, your assistance is vital to ensuring
appropriate resettlement in the U.S. for minors.