As detention centers reach capacity, the U.S. military prepares bases in Texas and Arkansas to house up to 20,000 immigrant children, though recent developments suggest they will instead be used to detain entire families indefinitely.
The news comes after the president signed an executive order supposedly ending the policy of separating immigrant families at the border, but that will allow for the indefinite detention of entire families.
Although the order is in direct conflict with the Flores settlement, which limits the detention of immigrant children to 20 days, the Department of Justice (DOJ) Thursday asked a federal district court to change the agreement.
“Irrespective of the court’s decision in Flores, it’s incumbent for Congress to finally act to keep families together, end catch and release, and create the foundation for an immigration system that serves the national interest.” — DOJ
All of this is occurring in the absence of any kind of governmental plan or initiative to reunite the thousands of children who have already been separated from their families.
Many groups independent of the government agencies actually holding the children, such as the Texas Civil Rights Project and The Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services (RAICES) Action Network, are working tirelessly to reunite these families but are struggling to accurately locate the majority of the children.
Bob Carey, former head of the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) under President Obama, accused the government of child abuse.
“This is child abuse being perpetrated by a government.”
Cynthia Nixon, former Sex in the City star turned New York gubernatorial candidate, has described Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) as a terrorist organization in her defense of Debora Berenice Vasquez, who is seeking sanctuary with her chidren.
”ICE has strayed so far from its mission. It’s supposed to be here to keep Americans safe, but what it’s turned into is frankly a terrorist organization of its own, that is terrorizing people who are coming to this country.”