The administration has failed to meet a court-ordered deadline today to reunite all immigrant children under the age of 5 with their parents.
Today, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will begin transporting all the youngest children across the country to undisclosed locations while they await reunification.
Although Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar said two weeks ago that there were only 2,047 children in government custody, he has recently admitted that there are actually 3,000 children still in detention — nearly a full thousand more children than he initially claimed.
Azar also claimed that he could locate any of the detained children at the press of a button — that claim, however, is becoming less and less credible as the operation to reunite these families continues to drag on.
“There is no reason why any parent would not know where their child is located. I could, at the stroke of—at keystrokes—I’ve sat on the ORR portal—with just basic keystrokes, within seconds, could find any child in our care for any parent.” — Azar
The Justice Department has said that it estimates it will only be able to reunite about half of the children under age 5 with their parents today, which is just about 50 children.
Only 50 out of the 3,000 in detention.
The good news, however, is that federal Judge Dolly Gee in Los Angeles ruled that the administration cannot overturn or amend the 1997 Flores settlement, which limits the detention of children to a maximum of 20 days.
Iron Triangle Press will continue to follow this story.