Trump administration moves to abolish child migrant custody limits

22 Août, 2019, 21:46 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • Trump administration moves to abolish child migrant custody limits

Homeland security officials believe that time limits on the detentions of migrant families have driven the surge of Central Americans crossing the border into the United States this year.

On Wednesday, Trump said he was seriously looking at ending the right of citizenship for US-born children of noncitizens and people who immigrated to the United States without documents.

"In this rule, we are implementing the relevant and substantive portions of the Flores Settlement Agreement".

"Through July we saw 475,000 family units. For the sake of thousands of immigrant families, the courts must halt this policy before it ever goes into practice". Make no mistake: "this new rule is about letting President Trump and Stephen Miller keep children in terrible conditions for longer periods of time and continue the administration's horrid treatment of innocent migrant families fleeing unthinkable hardship", US Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer said in a statement.

Congressman Joaquin Castro, the chairman of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, said in a statement that the administration is "punishing vulnerable families".

The Flores Settlement "has generally forced the government to release families into the country after just 20 days, incentivizing illegal entry", he said. "Promulgating this rule and seeking termination of the [Flores agreement] are important steps towards an immigration system that is humane and operates consistently with the intent of Congress", the statement added. "The Trump administration has been harshly criticized by Democrats for separating children from "parents", who are often adults posing as family", in order to detain them past the 20 day maximum.

"Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service strongly condemns this latest attack in the unceasing war on immigrants and urges the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Health and Human Services to work with us and other NGOs to develop a sane, sound and safe plan that respects the rights and dignity of all of God's children", the organization said. The agreement now restricts the amount of time children can be detained for at 20 days.

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"No child should be a pawn", McAleenan said at a news conference announcing the rule. "Or, as one gentleman in Guatemala told me, 'as a passport to the United States'".

"Although the rule is set to take effect 60 days after it is published, officials expect the implementation to last longer".

The administration sought to deter migrants past year through a "zero tolerance" policy that separated thousands of children from their parents.

"No idea why the Trump Administration believes the judge is going to let this happen", wrote immigration lawyer Greg Siskind on Twitter.

Presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke, a former congressman from a district along the border in Texas, noted in a Facebook post Wednesday that seven migrant children have died in the previous year either in USA custody or soon after release.

Even before the Trump administration sought to clamp down on irregular and legal immigration, only 21 to 25 per cent of asylum claims from El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala were approved between 2012 and 2017, according to tracking by Syracuse University's Transactional Records Action Clearinghouse.

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