As noted in our prior update, after separating over 2600 children from their parents who brought them here seeking safety, the government failed to meet a court deadline to reunite all of the youngest children (under 5 years old) with their parents. The government later failed to meet the deadline to reunite all of the older children (aged 5 to 17). Approximately 565 children, including 25 children under age 5, are still being held by the government.
Many parents signed away their legal rights when government officials told them that they would be reunited with their children more quickly that way. The parents were then deported without their children, 366 of whom are still here in government custody, according to this August 17, 2018 status update filed with the court. Many of these children are at real risk of gang recruitment and deadly gang violence and have independent claims for asylum. However, lawyers are having to fight in court to preserve that right as the government dangles reunification with their parents in front of them if they waive their legal right to request asylum.
For details on where the litigation and family reunification efforts stand right now, read this update by the ACLU, who represent the plaintiffs in the federal action seeking to reunite the impacted parents and children. The ACLU and the Government will be back in court on August 24th.