Children being held in chainlink cages by U.S. Customs and Border Protection

U.S. Customs and Border Protection

Coalition Calls for Immediate Reunification of Families

Statement Highlights Trauma, Cost, and Legal Aspects of Family Separations Under “Zero Tolerance” Policy

MIAMI –  The President’s recent Executive Order to end family separations and begin unified family detentions under the administration’s recently instituted “Zero Tolerance” policy fails to address the future of the more than 2,300 children who were taken from their asylum-seeking parents at our nation’s southern border. Although families will be detained together going forward, the latest Executive Order fails to specify the maximum time they will be detained.

A coalition of the following organizations calls for immediate reunification of families separated by the implementation of the “Zero Tolerance” policy and a reconsideration of the policy which, contrary to law and established legal precedent, criminally prosecutes refugees and incarcerates adult refugees with their children:  The Children's Trust, League of Women Voters of Miami-Dade County, ACLU Florida, Florida Immigrant Coalition, Haitian Women of Miami, Miami-Dade County Council of PTA/PTSA, New Florida Majority, United Teachers of Dade, and The Women's Fund of Miami-Dade.

The Coalition has released a sourced one-page fact sheet to educate the community about the trauma suffered by children who are separated from their parents; the cost of detention to taxpayers; and what the law says about family separation and the U.S. asylum process. The fact sheet is appended to this press release and can also be accessed on the websites of all participating organizations.

The coalition also calls on Florida’s Congressional delegation to work in bipartisan fashion to achieve comprehensive immigration reform to address these and other related issues, such as time limits on the detention of minors, including the 1,000 unaccompanied refugee children detained in a Homestead shelter; and the future of Dreamers in the DACA program. 

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Media Contact: 
Natalia Zea
Chief Public Policy & Community Engagement Officer, The Children’s Trust