The Latest On Separated Migrant Children

Kelly Langevin, Assistant News Editor

Two months have passed since a federal judge ordered young children to be returned to their migrant parents. Nearly 500 are still separated.

Documents filed in a lawsuit seeking to reunite the families say 497 of the 2,654 migrant children the Trump Administration took from their parents at the border are still in federal custody and not with their parents. Parents of 322 of those children were deported, according to NBC.

Judge Dana Sabraw ordered all children under age five to be reunited with parents by July 10, but 22 of them are still separated, according to government documents. The deadline for reuniting children between the ages of five and 18 was July 26, NBC said.

Representative Joaquín Castro, a Democrat from Texas, does not want the Trump Administration in charge of the reunification process any longer.

Appointing a special master or committee of special masters to oversee it is what Castro would like to see happen. Taking away small children from their parents is not something he agrees with.

“The Trump Administration started separating young kids from their parents with no plans to reunify them and that’s what makes this especially cruel. Some of these kids are very young and they’ve now been there for months and months,” Castro said.

Castro toured a Texas facility where separated children have been housed. Castro has seen first-hand where these children are living and knows it’s going to take a lot to get them out.

“It’s going to take the court, a judge, in this case, to come in there and say to Health and Human Services and to Immigration of Customs Enforcement, ‘I’m taking it out of your control. I’m giving it to somebody outside of government’ to make sure it gets done,” Castro said.

The Trump Administration began separating children from families to enforce its “zero tolerance policy,” which calls for prosecution of all individuals who illegally enter the United States.

Dealing with immigration is close to home for Roshanay Tahir, President of Carrying Humanity As New Generations Emerge, or C.H.A.N.G.E., a student-run activist organization based at Central that starts rallies and creates events in support of immigrant families who need assistance.

“We’ve been involved numerous ways on campus and around the state this past year, especially with our focus on immigration,” Roshanay said. “C.H.A.N.G.E. has been involved with the Ramos family’s case of Meriden, the Cardoso family’s case of New Britain, and our third immigration case is my family’s case the Rehman and Altaf family’s case of New Britain.”

Children have been placed in shelters and kept in federal custody. Allegations have emerged of sexual, physical and verbal abuse, mistreatment and the use of psychotropic drugs at the facilities. In Phoenix, a man working in a shelter there was arrested on suspicion of sexually abusing a 14-year-old girl.

Immigration headlines have not been shy. Roshanay Tahir likes to be involved as she can in making a difference dealing with immigration and also bringing other issues to the table.

“We also try to inform the community about immigration via Know Your Rights info sessions. Our organization has been heavily involved with immigration this past year and we still continue to be by showing our support at rallies and any events that are happening for others in the situation,” Roshanay stated.