Lawyers: We can't find parents of 545 kids separated by Trump administration

Lawyers say they can’t find the parents of 545 migrant children separated by Trump administration

About two-thirds of the 1,000-plus parents separated from their kids under a 2017 pilot program were deported before a federal judge ordered that they be found.

WASHINGTON — Lawyers appointed by a federal judge to identify migrant families who were separated by the Trump administration say that they have yet to track down the parents of 545 children and that about two-thirds of those parents were deported to Central America without their children, according to a filing Tuesday from the American Civil Liberties Union.

The Trump administration instituted a “zero tolerance” policy in 2018 that separated migrant children and parents at the southern U.S. border. The administration later confirmed that it had actually begun separating families in 2017 along some parts of the border under a pilot program. The ACLU and other pro-bono law firms were tasked with finding the members of families separated during the pilot program.

Unlike the 2,800 families separated under zero tolerance in 2018, most of whom remained in custody when the policy was ended by executive order, many of the more than 1,000 parents separated from their children under the pilot program had already been deported before a federal judge in California ordered that they be found.

“It is critical to find out as much as possible about who was responsible for this horrific practice while not losing sight of the fact that hundreds of families have still not been found and remain separated,” said Lee Gelernt, deputy director of the ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project. "There is so much more work to be done to find these families.

“People ask when we will find all of these families, and sadly, I can’t give an answer. I just don’t know,” Gelernt said. “But we will not stop looking until we have found every one of the families, no matter how long it takes. The tragic reality is that hundreds of parents were deported to Central America without their children, who remain here with foster families or distant relatives.”

The ACLU and other organizations that are part of a court-appointed “steering committee” learned that more than 1,000 families were separated in 2017 based on data provided by the Department of Homeland Security. Of those, the committee has been able to contact the parents of more than 550 children and believes about 25 of them may have a chance to come back to the U.S. for reunification.

Heartbreaking and enraging.

2 Likes

Guess they shouldn’t have brought their children into a foreign country illegally, but ideally they should have been deported together upon arrival, pending a dna test to confirm they minors are actually the children of the adults in their company and that they aren’t being trafficked.

6 Likes

A DNA test doesn’t tell that a child is rightfully with the adult. Though it does give weight to such a claim.

But one of the things that comes to mind is cases when the father finds out he isn’t actually the father.

It wouldn’t be perfect, but it would be better than just assuming an adult crossing a border illegally with children is the parent.

6 Likes

Already, that sterilization story seems to have fallen through. Excuse me if I am not buying this story.

4 Likes

I came to this forum thinking it was going to be theology-related.

It’s largely a few people just making threads bashing Donald Trump over and over.

4 Likes

You are in the wrong section.
Try here instead.
image

This is world news section.

Oh No, quite the opposite.

In either case, it would have been a good idea to perform tracking of who was with whom. But I don’t think remedying the problem was necessarily a concern at the time that it was being caused. I’m not sure that there is a concern now.

Let’s go back to 2018.

Trump direct quote:

“If they feel there will be separation, they don’t come,” he said of migrants during comments to reporters at the White House.

This was a heartless policy, done to those seeking asylum.

Seeking asylum is not illegal.

1 Like

These people largely aren’t seeking asylum. They’re seeking economic opportunity to the detriment of America’s working poor. Americas first duty is to its own citizens, not the rest of the world.

6 Likes

Two little known proposed rules intend to make it impossible for asylum seekers to prevail against the government (which opposes all asylum claims).

Cruelty is exactly the point.

1 Like

Well since most on the left like to decry how evil and racist the US is, stopping these people from coming here is really a kindness. They should go somewhere better and more progressive.

1 Like

I’m guessing there is more to the story. Quite a number of children were sent here by parents who did not come with them. Supposedly they were to hook up with relatives or others already here. But if that plan was poorly conceived or interrupted, the kids would not necessarily know what to do.

2 Likes

Not only that above, it was reported that children were used for purposes of trafficking by different parties, possibly as a prop.

3 Likes

Also back in 2018

And more recently:

Pope Francis condemns the Trump administration policy of separating families trying to enter the United States illegally.

“It’s cruelty, and separating kids from parents goes against natural rights,” the pope says. “It’s something a Christian cannot do.”

One really cannot deny child separation happened.

2 Likes

You have to meet certain conditions for asylum. They do not.

1 Like

I think you are talking about conditions for a request to be considered or granted. But seeking asylum itself isn’t illegal.

2 Likes

The Pope did not specifically cite the Trump administration in his statement. Presumably he knows that Trump did not make the policy. It was made by the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court in a series of decrees known, collectively, as the “Flores” decisions. The Ninth Circuit decreed that the U.S. COULD NOT hold adults and minors in the same facilities.

3 Likes

They can seek it from outside the country and we get to maintain border security, everyone wins!

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.