Where are the kids? Reporters demand answers

Immigration reporters Lomi Kriel, Rafael Carranza and Neena Satija tell Brian Stelter how they're still fighting for answers regarding the separated families at the border. "It's really chaos," Satija says. Kriel says her job is to "tell their stories."

Posted: Jul 9, 2018 12:27 PM
Updated: Jul 9, 2018 12:43 PM

A list provided by the government suggests that less than half the migrant children aged under 5 years old who have been forcibly separated from their parents will be reunited with their families by Tuesday, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) said.

A court order issued June 26 set a deadline of July 10 to reunite the roughly 100 young children with their parents.

On Friday, Justice Department attorney Sarah Fabian told a court that officials might need additional time to track down dozens of parents who are no longer in custody -- including 19 who were already deported. Fabian said officials should have no problem reuniting children and the 46 parents who remain in ICE custody.

Court will reconvene on Monday.

In a media release Sunday, the ACLU said that the government had "initially provided incomplete information" by a Saturday night deadline to list the children under 5 it had forcibly separated from parents and a revised list provided Sunday gave the names of 102 children.

"It appears likely that less than half will be reunited by Tuesday's court-ordered deadline," the group said.

A July 26 deadline remains in place for the reunification of all children separated by the Trump administration.

"It's extremely disappointing that the Trump administration looks like it will fail to reunite even half the children under 5 with their parents. These kids have already suffered so much because of this policy, and every extra day apart just adds to that pain," Lee Gelernt, deputy director of the ACLU's Immigrants' Rights Project, said in the statement.

But an administration official said efforts to reunite the children are "highly encouraging."

"Consistent with the court's optimism and encouragement, the administration has worked tirelessly since Friday's status conference toward the shared goal of promptly reunifying families while ensuring the safety of the children," the administration official said.

"The results of that work have been highly encouraging, and the Department of Justice is eager to present its progress to the court on Monday and to chart a path forward to safely reunifying other families expeditiously."

Where are the parents?

Friday's hearing was the latest in an ACLU lawsuit over the administration's family separations. The case includes a broader group of thousands of other children and parents, but the hearing focused largely on the pressing deadline for children under 5.

The Justice Department attorney provided the most detailed description officials have released so far about this particular group of immigrant children who were separated from their parents. Of the roughly 100 kids, Fabian said:

• 83 kids have been linked to 86 parents.

• 16 kids have not yet been linked with parents.

• 46 of those parents remain in the custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

• 19 of those parents have been released from ICE custody.

• 19 of those parents have been removed from the United States.

• Two of the parents have criminal histories that will prevent officials from reuniting them with their children.

Lengthy process of reunification

Officials have been marshaling "significant resources" as they work to comply with the court order, Fabian told the court Friday.

But she said their efficiency is hampered by requirements in the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act, which sets out requirements officials have to follow when they release children into someone's custody.

It's one reason, she said, why officials are taking such painstaking steps to confirm parent-child relationships using methods that include DNA testing.

Gelernt took issue with the government's DNA testing, saying it should be used as "a last resort" and pointing to privacy concerns.

He argued the government does not have to follow such "lengthy, cumbersome procedures" to reunite separated families.

West Lafayette
Broken Clouds
75° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 71°
Feels Like: 75°
Kokomo
Clear
69° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 69°
Rensselaer
Broken Clouds
72° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 72°
Fowler
Broken Clouds
72° wxIcon
Hi: 83° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 72°
Williamsport
Scattered Clouds
71° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 71°
Crawfordsville
Overcast
69° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 69°
Frankfort
Broken Clouds
68° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 68°
Delphi
Broken Clouds
73° wxIcon
Hi: 88° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 73°
Monticello
Broken Clouds
74° wxIcon
Hi: 89° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 74°
Logansport
Broken Clouds
68° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 68°
Active Pattern Ahead
WLFI Radar
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 73287

Reported Deaths: 3036
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion15701725
Lake7496275
Elkhart480184
Allen3835163
St. Joseph342381
Hamilton2723104
Vanderburgh192213
Hendricks1871108
Cass17869
Johnson1741118
Porter129439
Clark120247
Tippecanoe118911
Madison94365
LaPorte89430
Howard88465
Kosciusko84712
Bartholomew78047
Marshall77422
Floyd77246
Monroe74630
Delaware71452
Dubois68712
Boone67246
Noble66329
Hancock64738
Vigo61910
Jackson5855
Warrick57930
LaGrange55710
Shelby54627
Grant52630
Dearborn49628
Morgan46734
Clinton4303
Henry37620
Wayne36810
White36110
Montgomery35221
Lawrence34227
Decatur33532
Harrison32723
Putnam2868
Miami2692
Scott26610
Daviess26420
Greene24634
Franklin24114
Jasper2342
DeKalb2304
Jennings22412
Gibson2214
Steuben2073
Ripley1997
Fayette1867
Carroll1852
Perry18412
Starke1777
Posey1700
Orange16924
Wabash1653
Fulton1642
Wells1622
Jefferson1602
Knox1510
Whitley1516
Washington1391
Tipton1379
Spencer1313
Huntington1223
Newton11810
Randolph1184
Clay1165
Sullivan1131
Adams962
Jay910
Owen871
Pulaski791
Rush764
Brown731
Fountain732
Blackford632
Ohio635
Benton610
Pike530
Parke511
Vermillion490
Switzerland460
Crawford440
Martin430
Union390
Warren221
Unassigned0202

COVID-19 Important links and resources

As the spread of COVID-19, or as it's more commonly known as the coronavirus continues, this page will serve as your one-stop for the resources you need to stay informed and to keep you and your family safe. CLICK HERE

Closings related to the prevention of the COVID-19 can be found on our Closings page.

Community Events