The Trump Administration’s Latest Proposed Regulations for Immigration
In the latest news of the Trump Administration’s ever-evolving immigration policy, the Administration is now seeking to indefinitely detain immigrant children and their families who enter the United States without legal status.
In September 2018, the Departments of Homeland Security and Health and Human Services issued proposed regulationsthat would permit such indefinite detention, arguing that the changes are necessary to close “loopholes” that prevent the government from “promptly [removing] family units that have no legal basis to remain in the country.” If finalized, these proposed regulations would supplant the Flores Settlement Agreement, which has prohibited the federal government from detaining migrant children for longer than 20 days since 1997.
Under the current policy, adult migrants arriving in the U.S. without legal status are kept in detention while in deportation proceedings. But, under the Flores Agreement, the government must release children from detention without unnecessary delay. If the children can’t be placed somewhere suitable, then the government must house them in the least restrictive setting that is appropriate to their age and needs. The Trump Administration has complained that this rule has inhibited their ability to deport families intact and was the basis behind their short-lived policy of separating parents from their children.
The Administration’s proposed regulations would permit the government to detain children and their families for as long as the government determines necessary–which could be months or even years. Contrary to the Flores settlement, the rules would also permit families to be detained facilities that haven’t yet qualified for a licenseand would give these facilities “loopholes” for not meeting standards of care. Unaccompanied migrant minors, who usually receive more legal protections than other migrants, would lose their “unaccompanied” status as of their 18thbirthday under the proposed regulations and would be subject to immediate arrest like any other unlawful immigrant.
Immigration and children’s rights advocates have been aware that the proposal has been in the making for months and have been preparing to challenge them. The public is also entitled to comment upon the proposed regulations, from the moment the government first published them in September until November 6th(Election Day). The government must review those comments before finalizing the rules, although they don’t have to change them.
We will keep you updated as to the status of the proposed regulations in the months to come.
The experienced immigration attorneys at Zanes Law are eager to help immigrant families live in the United States. If you are in need of immigration help, please contactus or call us at 844-666-8181for a private consultation today.
To learn more about immigration attorney Doug Zanes, please visit his personal injury website at zaneslaw.com.