17 states sue Trump administration over family separations

17 states sue Trump administration over family separations

SEATTLE (AP) – Seventeen states, including Washington, New York and California, sued President Donald Trump’s administration Tuesday in an effort to force officials to reunite migrant families who have been separated at the U.S.-Mexico border.

Late Tuesday, a federal judge in California issued a ruling on a separate but similar lawsuit. U.S. District Judge Dana Sabraw in San Diego ordered border authorities to reunite children with their families within 30 days of the Tuesday ruling, or 14 days if the child is younger than 5. Sabraw also issued a nationwide injunction on future family separations.

It wasn’t immediately clear how the federal ruling would impact the states’ lawsuit, which was filed in federal court in Seattle.

File – In this June 21, 2018, file photo, Attorney General Bob Ferguson, left, speaks as Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, center, and Solicitor General Noah Purcell look on at a news conference announcing a lawsuit against the Trump administration over a policy of separating immigrant families illegally entering the United States, in front of the Federal Detention Center in SeaTac, Wash. Seventeen states, including Washington, New York and California, are suing to force the Trump administration to reunite migrant families who have been separated at the U.S.-Mexico border. The lawsuit filed Tuesday, June 26, 2018, is the first by states over the practice. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File)

The states, all led by Democratic attorneys general, joined Washington, D.C. in the first legal challenge by states over the Trump administration’s recent policy of splitting children from migrant families who may have crossed the border illegally.

The administration’s practice of separating families is cruel, plain and simple, New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal said in an emailed statement. Every day, it seems like the administration is issuing new, contradictory policies and relying on new, contradictory justifications. But we can’t forget the lives of real people hang in the balance.

Immigration authorities have separated about 2,300 children from their parents in recent weeks, sparking global outrage as images and recordings of weeping children emerged. Many parents are in custody thousands of miles from their children, whom they have not been able to see and have rarely spoken to for a month or more.

After falsely blaming Democrats for the separations and insisting that only Congress could fix the issue, the president last week issued an executive order designed to end the practice under his zero tolerance policy, which prosecutes adults who come to the U.S. illegally.

But the states say his order is riddled with caveats and fails to reunite parents and children who have already been torn apart. They accuse the administration of denying the parents and children due process; denying the immigrants, many of whom are fleeing gang violence in Central America, their right to seek asylum; and being arbitrary in applying the policy.

A Seattle-based immigrant rights group sued Monday on behalf of detained asylum-seekers in Washington state who have been separated from their children.

The states that sued are Massachusetts, California, Delaware, Iowa, Illinois, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia and Washington.

President Donald Trump speaks during a meeting with Republican lawmakers in the Cabinet Room of the White House, Tuesday, June 26, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

In this June 21, 2018, photo, migrant children walk off a bus at the Catholic Charities’ Msgr. Bryan Walsh Children’s Village in Cutler Bay, Fla. Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz said Monday, June 25, that children who range in age from newborns to 5 years old are being sheltered at this facility and His House Children’s Home in Miami Gardens. (Photo/Brynn Anderson)

News Source DailyMailsNews

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