On May 12, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced a ‘no tolerance’ policy for migrants entering the United States illegally, referring each case for prosecution. The prosecutions often resulted in child separation, placing the no tolerance policy under withering media scrutiny, leading to a lawsuit from the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). Last night, a ruling from a federal judge granted the ACLU an injunction preventing further family separations. The order also requires the United States government to reunite all families separated by the policy.
See the ruling.
The injunction stipulates that the government has 14 days to reunite children under 5 with their parents and 30 days to reunite older children. United States District Court for the Southern District of California Judge Dana M. Sabraw, a George W. Bush appointee, found the ACLU lawsuit likely to succeed on its merits. The ACLU lawsuit argues that families separated at the border are not receiving a constitutionally guaranteed right of due process under the law.
According to news reports, more than 2,000 children have been separated from their parents, and it appears that in some cases the government has no coherent plans on how to reunite them with their parents. The Trump administration had sent mixed signals before the ruling. On June 25th, border security officials stated that they had stopped referring border-crossing families for prosecution. That same day, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said that zero tolerance was still in effect and that the policy was unchanged. As of this writing, it is not yet known how the administration will comply with new court order.
In the recent months, immigration news has been coming too fast for most people to keep up with. The Law Offices of Scott Warmuth continuously monitors immigration news stories to determine possible changes to the laws that could affect our clients. We offer a robust immigration legal service. For a free consultation, call us today at 888-517-9888.