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Judge stops U.S. expulsion of migrant children

by Kyle Ziemnick
Posted 11/18/20, 05:08 pm

The Department of Homeland Security in March started requiring officials to deport unaccompanied migrant children as soon as practical rather than keep them in custody during the coronavirus pandemic. U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan handed down a preliminary injunction on Wednesday blocking DHS from enforcing the rule. The agency has expelled more than 8,800 children since implementing the change, sending some back across the border to Mexico and holding others in hotel rooms until flights to their home countries became available.

Why did Sullivan stop the deportations? He said the government had enough facilities to care for unaccompanied minors without creating overcrowding or risking transmission of the coronavirus. He found the harm to children outweighed any burden of placing them in temporary DHS custody. The Justice Department can appeal the decision.

Dig deeper: Read my report in Compassion on the holding of migrant children in Texas hotels.

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Kyle Ziemnick

Kyle is a WORLD Digital news reporter. He is a World Journalism Institute and Patrick Henry College graduate. Kyle resides in Purcellville, Va. Follow him on Twitter @kylezim25.

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