Family separations will persist under Trump’s order

22 Juin, 2018, 06:32 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • LISTEN Border agent mocks migrant children crying for parents at detention center

"The administration still plans to criminalize families - including children - by holding them in prison-like detention facilities".

Wednesday's order leaves several unanswered questions: What happens to the more than 2,000 children already separated from their parents since April; where will the families be housed?

Trump, speaking to reporters at the White House, said he hoped his measure would be matched with legislation in the U.S. Congress.

Rep. Mike Conaway, the Republican chairman of the House Agriculture Committee, said he believed there were concerns among some GOP lawmakers about the amount of spending in the bill as well as changes to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP.

"We had a great meeting", Mr Trump called out as he left.

Asked what he'd do if both votes fail, Ryan said he would "cross that bridge if we get to it" before emphasizing that his goal was not to pass legislation, but rather to prevent the discharge petition from dictating which legislation the House would consider.

Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., stated, "I appreciate that the President has acknowledged what virtually everyone said from the beginning - that this was a policy started by the administration that they had the ability to reverse or fix at any time".

"It's important to recognize there's an injury and a trauma that you inflict on these children from separating them from their parents that can not be made up for by allowing them to play on a soccer field or making sure someone is there to read them a book", Omar Jadwat, the director of the ACLU's Immigrants Rights Project, told the PBS NewsHour.

Both House bills, backed by Trump but opposed by Democrats and immigration advocacy groups, would fund the wall Trump has proposed along the USA border with Mexico and reduce legal migration, in part by denying visas for some relatives of U.S. residents and citizens living overseas. At the same time, we are keeping a very powerful border and it continues to be a zero-tolerance.

But some worry the lack of a clear resolution could exacerbate an already tough situation as his party heads toward the mid-terms.

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"It hasn't been good and the American people don't like the idea that we are separating families", Sessions said on CBN.

How many kids have been separated from parents?

US Customs and Border Protection said on Tuesday that 2,342 children had been separated from their parents at the border between May 5 and June 9.

Parents who are referred by border agents for prosecution are held in federal jails, while their children are moved into border shelter facilities under the custody of the Office of Refugee Resettlement, a Department of Health and Human Services agency.

There are 100 sites scattered across 17 states.

The House is scheduled to vote on a broader immigration package Thursday that also would allow the indefinite detention of immigrant families.

Instead, the children could be detained with their parents for extended periods.

In the Senate, meanwhile, Republicans rallied behind a different approach. Leadership promised conservatives a vote on the measure in exchange for consideration of the annual farm bill - which hard-line members of the House Freedom Caucus torpedoed last month over their demands for a vote on the Securing Americas Future Act.

"While cases are pending, families should stay together", tweeted Senator Cruz, who is in an unexpectedly tough re-election battle. "First, the Court should provide a limited exemption from its construction of the Flores Settlement Agreement's release provisions so that ICE may detain alien minors who have arrived with their parent or legal guardian together in ICE family residential facilities", a press release from the DOJ read.

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