Washington, Oct 21 : The parents of 545 children who had been separated from their families by US border officials between 2017-2018, were still reported to be missing, according to a court filing.
Tuesday’s filing from the Justice Department and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is part of an ongoing effort to reunite families who were separated after President Donald Trump’s administration imposed the “zero tolerance” policy in 2018 at the southern US border, reports CNN.
According to the filing, a court-appointed “steering committee” has tried to locate those families.
As of Tuesday, the committee tried to reach the families of 1,030 children, of which 545 were not reachable.
“Approximately two-thirds of parents are believed to have been deported without their children,” the filing said.
“Following a suspension due to the Covid-19 pandemic, limited physical on-the-ground searches for separated parents has now resumed where possible to do so while protecting the health of personnel working with the steering committee and members of vulnerable communities in separated parents’ home countries.”
In a statement, Lee Gelernt, deputy director of the ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project, said: “It is critical to find out as much as possible about who was responsible for this horrific practice while not losing sight of the fact that hundreds of families have still not been found and remain separated.” “
“There is so much more work to be done to find these families. People ask when we will find all of these families, and sadly, I can’t give an answer. I just don’t know.
“But we will not stop looking until we have found every one of the families, no matter how long it takes.
“The tragic reality is that hundreds of parents were deported to Central America without their children, who remain here with foster families or distant relatives,” he was quoted as saying in the statement by NBC News.
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