After legal professionals intervened on the woman’s behalf, arguing that her rights had been violated through the expulsion, she was allowed into the United States and is now residing in a shelter in Arizona. Her father mentioned he was ready for permission from the U.S. authorities to be reunited.
“I’ve been out of my mind,” he mentioned. “This is a really, really stressful situation. It’s about your kids, you want always the best for them, but at the same time you know that you can’t physically protect them or do anything right now, so that is really frustrating.”
Lawyers for the American Civil Liberties Union are difficult the observe of expelling migrant kids in federal court docket, arguing that it violates youngster welfare legal guidelines, such because the Trafficking Victims Protection Act, in addition to nationwide immigration legal guidelines, which require particular protections for migrant kids touring alone.
“Even apart from the general illegality of Title 42, it is separately illegal under the immigration laws to expel a non-Mexican child to Mexico,” mentioned Lee Gelernt, the lead lawyer within the case.
The authorities has lately begun referring to migrant kids who cross the border alone in a different way — as “single minors” reasonably than “unaccompanied alien children” — reinforcing the notion that whereas the pandemic-related border closure is in place, such kids will not be eligible for the authorized protections that may in any other case have been accessible to them.
According to public knowledge, U.S. authorities have expelled greater than 200,000 folks because the new public well being border closure took impact, however the administration wouldn’t reply questions on what number of of them have been kids, nor about what number of have been despatched to Mexico. In December, border authorities acknowledged in federal court docket that not less than eight,800 kids have been expelled from the United States since March.
The human rights group Women’s Refugee Commission, working with a number of different advocacy organizations, filed a public data request with Mexican authorities and acquired knowledge suggesting that not less than 208 Central American kids had been returned to the custody of Mexican authorities between March 21 and June 5. But the Mexican authorities didn’t specify how lots of the kids have been touring alone, and never accompanied by adults.