NIJC Joins with National Coalition to Launch New Comment Tool to Stop Child and Family Detention

WASHINGTON, D.C. October 9, 2018 – As the U.S. government continues to accept comments on proposed regulations which would allow the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to jail children and families indefinitely and roll back basic requirements for how they are treated in custody, the National Immigrant Justice Center (NIJC) has joined FWD.us and the Families Belong Together campaign to launch a new online tool to allow Americans to speak out to defend children and families.

A new regulation proposed last month by the Trump administration would eliminate the 1997 Flores Settlement Agreement, which prohibits the indefinite detention of immigrant children in unsafe and inappropriate conditions. The agreement requires that children be released from custody as quickly as possible (preferably to a parent), and be held in the least restrictive setting until they can safely be released (generally, in a non-secure facility licensed by a child welfare entity). The administration’s proposed regulation would end all of these protections.

Advertisement

“Americans spoke out and made a difference in demanding an end to the family separation policy earlier this year; saving the Flores protections is the next phase in the fight to protect these kids and families,” said NIJC Director of Policy Heidi Altman. “DHS’s bid to expand its authority and capacity to hold children in its sprawling network of jails and prisons comes even as the department’s own medical experts and inspector general have reported in recent months that the agency is unable or unwilling to ensure the basic safety and health of people in its custody. The agency has no business detaining children, and we need Americans to once again speak out and say this is not what our government should be doing in our name, or with our tax dollars.”

Take Action: Submit a comment by November 6 to the federal government and tell the Trump administration to stop family detention.

The National Immigrant Justice Center (NIJC) is a nongovernmental organization dedicated to ensuring human rights protections and access to justice for all immigrants, refugees, and asylum seekers through a unique combination of direct services, policy reform, impact litigation and public education. Visit immigrantjustice.org and follow @NIJC.