According to a report by the American Civil Liberties Union released Oct. 24, over 5,400 children have been separated from their families by U.S. immigration authorities at the Mexican border since July 2017.
While a federal judge in San Diego on June 26, 2018, ordered that the children be reunited with their families, the ACLU report cites the difficulty of locating the children due to the government’s inadequate tracking system.
Calling the Trump administration policies “shocking … inhumane and illegal,” ACLU attorney Lee Gelernt said: “Families have suffered tremendously, and some may never recover.” (aclu.org, Oct. 24)
Earlier in October, lawyers from the Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services, reported that Immigration and Customs Enforcement moved 700 women from a Texas detention center but failed to provide any updated information on their online detainee tracking system. Many of the women had serious and deteriorating health issues. RAICES director Andrea Meza stated, “I’m really fearful that their conditions could worsen. I don’t want them to be another ICE press release about death in detention.” (msn.com, Oct. 9)
At least seven immigrants have died in ICE detention centers in 2019, and six minor children died in Border Patrol centers because they did not receive proper medical care.