Federal judge allows ACLU’s lawsuit against family separation of asylum-seekers to advance


The American Civil Liberties Union’s lawsuit aimed at stopping the federal government from separating children from their parents at the U.S. border has permission to proceed. As new reports on the horrible practice pour in, the new policy continues to tear families apart, to punish families who reach the borer and to deter immigrants with children from make the decision to seek asylum.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions has argued, and President Trump has insisted, that U.S. law demands the separation of children from their parents. As we’ve discussed previously, this is absolutely. There is no such law, and the new policy is entirely one of choice. Upon reaching the border, children are being pulled away from their parents—often under deceptive terms—and are often detained hundreds of miles away from their parents in stark, crowded facilities. The ACLU argues that this practice is inhumane and unnecessary, while the Trump administration fired back that these families have “no constitutional right to remain together.”

Federal Judge Dana M. Sabraw of San Diego heard both arguments and is allowing the lawsuit to proceed on “constitutional due process grounds,” though he dismissed the ACLU’s claim that separating families violates U.S. asylum laws.

The practice of separating children adds more fear and confusion to a situation that is already fraught for so many families. When the most vulnerable are punished for fleeing violence and abuse, that is simply adding insult to injury. Just in the two weeks since A.G. Sessions announced the policy, “638 parents who had arrived at the border with 658 children were prosecuted.” The numbers are staggering, and the facilities these children are being funneled into are crowded and nearing capacity, all because the administration chooses to punish families seeking help. With the ACLU’s lawsuit going forward, we at Soberalski Immigration Law hope that sense and human decency will prevail over cruelty and injustice.

For more on the ACLU’s lawsuit, please see: https://www.teenvogue.com/story/aclu-challenge-trump-administration-immigrant-family-separation-policy