The United States could help pay for transportation, healthcare, legal services, and career and educational programs for migrant families separated under former President Donald Trump's "zero tolerance" border strategy, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) said on Monday.
MAYORKAS: “To put it succinctly, the prior administration dismantled our nation's immigration system in its entirety.” U.S. Homeland Security chief Alejandro Mayorkas on Monday said - during a White House briefing - that the Biden administration is now rebuilding a quote ‘gutted’ immigration system… And going forward, the U.S. could help pay for transportation, healthcare, legal services among others for migrant families separated at the U.S.-Mexico border under former President Donald Trump's "zero tolerance" policy.
DHS said in a Monday statement that reunification costs could also be covered by NGOs and the private sector.
But the migrant families would not have to flip the bill.
Thousands of children were separated from their parents at the border under Trump's policy.
But advocates say border officials separated families both before and after that policy was in place.
Many families have been reunited, but efforts are still ongoing in court to locate the parents of more than 500 separated children.
The Biden administration has said it will consider bringing deported parents back to the United States.
”We are hoping to reunite the families either here, or in the country of origin.
We hope to be in a position to give them the election, and if in fact they seek to reunite here in the United States, we will explore lawful pathways for them to remain in the United States and to address the family needs..." The numbers of children and families arriving at the U.S.-Mexico border have risen in recent months.
And even though Mayorkas said this was not a crisis, but a challenge officials were managing… he had a stern message for would-be migrants: They need to wait.
"It takes time to rebuild the system from scratch." He added that officials are sending migrants back to Mexico, due to COVID-19 protocols.