USA says it reunifies 57 of 103 young migrants as deadline looms

USA says it reunifies 57 of 103 young migrants as deadline looms

USA says it reunifies 57 of 103 young migrants as deadline looms

PolitiFact made a decision to take a closer look at the issue to lay out what's known and what remains uncertain about the process.

On June 26, a federal judge in San Diego ordered that parents and children who had been separated after crossing the border illegally should be reunited within 30 days-or 14 days if the child is under 5. Attorney General Jeff Sessions officially announced the policy April 6 as a deterrent to illegal immigration.

Officials determined that the rest are ineligible for reunification for a variety of reasons, ranging from their parents' criminal records to the fact that some self-proclaimed parents were not their parents at all.

The other 46 children were ineligible for reunification for various reasons, including that their parents had criminal histories, were in custody or had been deported, as well as for health reasons.

Administration officials had been under a mandate to reunite the youngest minors, or migrants under the age of 5, with their families by Tuesday - and by Thursday morning, they say they have reunited 57 of the 103 children who fit that criteria. Seven adults were determined not to be a parent, one had a falsified birth certificate, one was alleged to have abused the child, one planned to house the child with an adult charged with sexually abusing a child and one is being treated for a communicable disease, according to HHS.

Lawyers for the American Civil Liberties Union said the administration has not properly explained why it was unable to carry out the process to identify parents by the Tuesday deadline. The judge ordered children 5 and older to be reunited by July 26.

In court Tuesday, Justice Department attorneys told Sabraw that they believed the two orders still allowed the administration to ask parents detained at the border to either waive the right to remain with their children, as recognized in the San Diego case, or waive the Flores settlement's maximum 20-day limit that a child can be forced to spend in immigration detention.

But the principal point of contention is likely to be the matter of eligibility: How did federal officials decide that more than three dozen children can not be safely returned to their parents at this time - and was that decision in line with the court's criteria? Eleven others are either in custody for other unspecified offenses, while the last adult's whereabouts are unknown.

"This number represents the total possible cohort of minors who could potentially be subject to the court order, and, based on past experience, includes a significant number of minors who cannot or should not be reunified with the adults in question", said HHS spokeswoman Evelyn Stauffer. Health and Human Services manages their care inside the U.S. Homeland Security has control over adults in immigration detention, and the Justice Department manages the immigration courts.

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On Friday, Sabraw also signaled that he was inclined to have the US government shoulder the travel costs for parents trying to reunite with their children, as the ACLU requested, though the issue was unresolved.

Sabraw said that going forward, the government should provide 12 hours' notice before a reunification.

There have been numerous reports of families separated even when they showed up - legally - at ports of entries to ask for asylum.

The Trump administration has emphasized that immigrants who want to claim asylum should do so at ports of entry instead of trying to come in illegally. They crossed through Mexico to reach the USA border. They are to reunite more than 2,000 older children with their families.

ICE has started releasing families into the United States, with parents wearing a Global Positioning System ankle monitor.

A national outcry, including from many of his fellow Republicans, prompted President Trump to sign an executive order stopping family separations.

On July 9, a federal judge rejected the government's settlement modification request.

Albence, though, maintained that all of those parents agreed to be deported without their child.

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