WASHINGTON DC, KOMPAS.com – Parents of 545 children separated from their families at the border AS-Mexico due to policy immigration US President Donald Trump no one has yet been found, according to the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) lawyers team.
About two-thirds of the parents of hundreds of children have been deported to their respective countries, according to court documents.
Thousands of families were forced to separate due to immigration policies Trump which went into effect in 2018, until the White House finally stepped down after the policy drew protests.
The Covid-19 pandemic has slowed down tracking of the parents of hundreds of migrant children believed to be currently living United States of America.
The crackdown on migrants crossing the US-Mexico border was first announced in April 2018, but it was later revealed that the government had started family separation a year earlier, as part of a secret pilot program.
As soon as the zero-tolerance migration policy was announced, pictures and audio emerged of children sleeping in cages and crying over their parents, sparking widespread criticism from within the US and around the world.
In June 2018, in response to a lawsuit filed by the ACLU, a US judge ordered that migrant children and their parents be reunited within 30 days.
After that, thousands of families were reunited within weeks.
However, families separated in the 2017 pilot program are not included in this court order and the order to reunite them only took place last year.
Of the 1,030 children separated from their parents, 485 children have been reunited with their families.
The ACLU and a team of lawyers tasked with tracking down the whereabouts of the parents of hundreds of children said the children’s parents “could not be found” in court documents filed on Tuesday (20/10/2020) by the ACLU and the US Department of Justice.
The group has carried out “time-consuming and difficult on-the-ground searches to find parents in their home countries.”
According to the document, search efforts were hindered by the coronavirus.
“These families must be reunited and the administration has to take responsibility,” said Lee Gelernt of the ACLU Immigrant Rights Project and lead lawyer on the family separation case, in a statement.
Separating children from their parents is “one of the biggest blemishes” on the Trump administration, he said.
At the time, President Donald Trump initially defended the practice, saying he “didn’t want” to take children from their parents, but “when you sue parents for illegal entry – which should happen – you have to take the kids away. . “.
His decision to abandon the policy months later was reportedly influenced by photographs of children in the detention facility.
Gelernt said ALCU will continue to search for families until one is found.
“These are children who have been separated for years, some of whom were still babies when separated from their parents,” he said.