The commission appointed by a US court continues without locating the parents of 628 minors who were separated at the border with Mexico, when the Donald Trump government began, indicates a judicial text presented this Wednesday in court, which also includes telephone numbers provided by the Government to assist in the search.
Preliminarily, the parents of 333 minors are believed to be in the United States, and the rest (295) outside the United States.
It should be noted that the foregoing does not necessarily mean that parents and children remain separated, but rather that the aforementioned commission has not been able to locate the parents. So far, the panel has only been able to locate relatives of 168 of the 628 minors, that is, uncles, grandparents, etc.
The document brought to the US court provides the latest insight into efforts to reunite families affected by the policy of “zero tolerance” regarding illegal border crossings. And this led to thousands of separations when the parents were criminally prosecuted.
On November 25 of this year, the US government provided telephone numbers and information from a database of the Executive Office for Immigration Review of the Department of Justice, which manages the immigration courts, -details the document.
Lee Gelernt, an attorney representing parents for the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), emphasized that “We only received this new information (from the Government) a day before Thanksgiving, and only because of the global outrage generated by the fact that these parents have not yet been located.”
The politics that separated them
More than 2,700 minors were separated from their parents in June 2018. In this context, federal judge Dana Sabraw, of San Diego, ordered that the practice implemented with the policies of “zero tolerance”, determining that parents and children were reunited no later than 30 days.
The 628 minors whose parents remain unaccounted for were separated before the judge issued the order, with cases even dating back to July 1, 2017, and all of them were released from federal custody prior to the June 2018 order, which It has created difficulties when it comes to tracking minors.
Joe Biden, the president-elect of the United States, raised the subject during the last weeks of his campaign, and on that he promised to create a task force to help locate parents.
The ACLU wants Biden to allow separated families to return to the United States and be granted “Certain type of legal status”Gelernt commented.
“We think it is fair considering what they put them through”, dijo learned. “We will find the families, but we cannot give the families the right to return to the United States or give them legal status. The government is the only one that can do that ”.
Volunteers have sought out parents by phone and door to door in Central America, a task that was interrupted by the coronavirus pandemic. The commission established free phones in the United States, Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador, and sent approximately 1,600 letters to families where the parents could be.