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Asylum seekers may be separated from their children

Immigration can reunite families in Kentucky by allowing spouses, children and other family members of U.S. citizens to become citizens themselves. In some cases, though, leaving their home countries results in family separation, instead. Deportation is not the only threat. People seeking asylum could be at risk of being removed from their loved ones and detained thousands of miles apart.

There are those in President Donald Trump's administration who believe separating parents from their children could act as a deterrent to others who may be considering coming to the U.S. seeking asylum. In fact, according to the American Civil Liberties Union, this is already a common practice. The ACLU has filed a class action lawsuit seeking to make it illegal for immigration authorities to separate families.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security claims that such separations occur because it is necessary to make sure that the adults who bring the children into the country are not human traffickers, and the minors their victims. Another factor in the separation, government officials say, is that an adult who enters the country without the proper documentation is typically detained by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. At that point, immigrant children become unaccompanied minors, which places them under the responsibility of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Regardless of the reasons behind the separations, language barriers, time limits and difficulty procuring proper forms could create difficulties in the asylum seeking process for the adults in the detention centers. Many turn to immigration attorneys to help them become asylees and reunite with their children.

Source: Lexington Herold Leader, "ACLU sues Trump administration to stop family separation," Nomaan Merchant, March 9, 2018

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