During the Trump Administration, more than 5,500 children were separated from their parents.
Photo: PAUL RATJE / . via .
In the coming days, the administration of President Joe Biden will reunify 29 children who were separated from their parents when crossing the border in the last administration, but so far the Inter-Institutional Working Group on Family Reunification has located 3,193 cases.
The Working Group has a close coordination with civil organizations, which have contact with some of the deported migrant parents or who were separated from their children, but live in the United States, during the government of Donald trump, under the “zero tolerance” policy, applied between July 1, 2017 and January 20, 2021.
“Thanks to the support of NGOs, 1,779 children were reunited with their parents in the United States under previous court orders“The report states. “During the last 30 days, through the Task Force and NGO coordination, another 7 children were reunited with their parents, bringing the total number of reunited children to 1,786.”
Indicates that there are 2,127 children for whom the Task Force does not have a confirmed reunification record, but he indicated that additional reunifications are taking place.
“The Department of Homeland Security is committed to the relentless quest to reunify families that were cruelly separated by the previous administration,” said Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas. “When we reunited the first seven families last month, I said this was just the beginning. In the next few weeks we will reunite 29 more families. In close coordination with non-governmental organizations, legal and inter-institutional partners, the Working Group will continue with this fundamental work ”.
In the podcast “El Diario Sin Límites”, Amari Verastegui, legal assistant for vulnerable populations at the Catholic Legal Immigration Network (CLINIC) indicated that the process is complex.
That association is one of the organizations that has assisted in the reunification process and currently works with 36 families, but there are several additional non-profit groups.
Verastegui added that Parents who were deported must first obtain a “pardon” or “parole” from the Office of Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), to travel to the United States. An Employment Authorization is also issued to these individuals.
The Task Force announced that there are nearly 50 applications with USCIS, of which 37 have already been reviewed and have been granted humanitarian parole.
“Once they enter the United States, These individuals will be allowed to stay for an initial period of 36 months with the opportunity to apply for a Work Authorization“Says the report.
The foregoing applies to the people of the families that met in May, as well as to the 29 families that will meet in the coming weeks, the Government said.
“For too long, families have been separated under the inhumane policies established under the previous Administration,” said Task Force executive director Michelle Brané. “In the coming weeks, 28 families that were separated will be reunited… in addition to the seven families previously reunited in May. We will provide support and services so that these families begin to rebuild their lives ”.
DHS does interagency work with the Department of State, the Department of Health and Human Services, and the Department of Justice.
According to figures from civil organizations, at least 5,500 children were separated from their parents during the Trump Administration.