Judge calls U.S. efforts to reunite deported parents…

Judge calls U.S. efforts to reunite deported parents…

Judge calls U.S. efforts to reunite deported parents…

A federal judge said Friday that the Trump administration is "100 percent" responsible for reuniting migrant families separated at the southern border as a result of its "zero tolerance" immigration policy.

It remains unclear what will happen when the parents are located.

Cmdr. Jonathan White, the public-health official who has led the reunification effort for HHS, told the senators that, while signing away reunification rights may be hard to fathom, "many parents have made this journey to deliver their children here because that is the desperate, last act of a parent trying to take the child out of some of the most risky places to raise a child in the world". Sabraw said that plan was not acceptable and placed that responsibility squarely on the government.

Sabraw, who was appointed by George W Bush in 2003, was blunt during a status conference on Friday with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) attorneys who sued for family reunification and lawyers for the Trump administration.

At a Tuesday hearing, Commander Jonathan White of the US Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, who's been heading up family reunification efforts, had said the parents of more than 500 kids from separated families are no longer in the US and may have been deported.

As roughly two-thirds of the families separated by the administration have been reunited, the focus in an ongoing court case that ordered reunifications has turned to the more hard cases - especially the hundreds of parents who were deported to their home countries alone.

The ACLU proposes that parents who want their children sent back home be reunited within a week and that those who want to return to the U.S.to pick up their kids be permitted under humanitarian parole, with round-trip transportation paid for by the government.

In Thursday's court filing, the ACLU had pushed back against the Justice Department proposal, saying that the group and its allies "will do whatever they can to help locate the deported parents, but emphasize that the government must bear the ultimate burden of finding the parents". "That will be 100 percent of the government's responsibility". It questioned why the government has not made that clear to date and hasn't made more progress on that front.


"Not only was it the government's unconstitutional separation practice that led to this crisis, but the United States Government has far more resources than any group of NGOs", the ACLU said in the filing.

Sabraw, a George W. Bush appointee who has a mild and straightforward manner on the bench, has not threatened the government with any sanctions. That lawsuit said that minors should be allowed to remain in the United States to pursue their legal rights apart from their parents.

The ACLU said government records are so bad that at least 120 deported parents have no valid address listed for where they might be.

Earlier last week, President Trump tweeted praise for Sabraw without naming him.

Tucsonans protest Trump's family separation policy, in June. The administration says it will meet with the ACLU to discuss what information it can provide, while the ACLU requests specific details - ranging from last known phone number and copies of birth certificates - as well as volunteers to help find the parents.

The ACLU said it takes "a degree of detective work" to track down contact information for deported parents, some of whom may be hiding from persecutors.

"Every day the government has sat on this information has been another day of suffering for these families", Gelernt said.

The ACLU lawyers also asked the government to arrange travel documents and pay for airfare to reunite children with their deported parents.

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