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Texas Tribune @TexasTribune
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1/ Thread: Here’s everything we know about immigrant children being separated from their families. #ZeroTolerance #separatingchildren #ImmigrantChildren
2/ About 2,000 children have been separated from their parents at the border, but the actual number is likely higher.
3/ This comes after the Trump administration announced a “zero tolerance” policy. That means all adults crossing the border illegally will be prosecuted. Since children can't be sent to federal jail, kids who are detained are being separated from parents.
4/ A temporary "tent city" opened Friday at the port of entry at Tornillo in Texas. The facility will hold 360 minors and could expand.

Photos and video by @i_p_a_1 for the @TexasTribune.
5/ Why is the Trump administration doing this? The policy is meant to deter immigrants from attempting to cross the border illegally.
6/ How did the Obama administration handle similar cases? The Obama administration drew criticism from immigration advocates for its 2015 policy of detaining mothers and children, but it released families from detention together.
7/ Why are people migrating here? We have explored this issue extensively in the past. As one migrant put it to us: “We found ourselves in a place where we had to decide - to die or to leave."
8/ You can explore the path that some migrants take here:
9/ And what happens to the children once they get here and are separated? They are taken into custody by the Office of Refugee Resettlement.

Caseworkers, judges and Border Patrol officers don’t know when families will be reunited.
10/ How are Texas lawmakers reacting?

Democrats are outraged. Most Texas Republicans have remained quiet.
11/ Looking to learn more? We made a list of reporters covering this story. Follow them here:
12/ Got questions for us? Ask them here: or email

We’ll update this thread as we learn more.
13/ Here’s a list of organizations that are mobilizing to help immigrant children separated from their families:
14/ Ted Cruz has introduced legislation that would keep immigrant families together after they cross the border. Here's what it would do:
15/ We've gotten this reader question a lot: What kind of conditions are the kids living in?

There are doctors and caseworkers. Kids go to school for 6 hours a day and spend 2 hours outside. They are allowed to make two phone calls a week. More details:
16/ More details: Yesterday, @ProPublica obtained audio from inside a U.S. Customs and Border Protection facility in which children can be heard wailing as an agent jokes: “We have an orchestra here.”

17/ Watch an aerial view of the tent city near El Paso that’s holding immigrant children who have been separated from their parents.

Reminder: If you have questions, send them here:
18/ Reminder: We're building a Twitter list of journalists who are covering family separations. Follow this list and let us know who is missing.
19/ @SpeakerStraus has asked Donald Trump to end the policy of separating immigrant children from their parents:
20/ We're keeping track of what all Texas lawmakers are saying here.

21/ Follow @neenareports for updates today.
22/ What about people who are claiming asylum? Over the past few weeks, asylum seekers have been turned away at ports of entry by border patrol officers, according to reports.

Homeland Security Secretary says CBP is asking people come back later.
23/ Why aren't migrants turning back? Why are immigrants coming here?

@neenareports answers this —> "1 mom from Honduras told us gang members threatened to kill her 3-yo son if she didn’t sell drugs for them."

24/ Are any girls being separated? Photos released to media only show boys. On a call with reporters Tuesday, the Departments of Homeland Security and Health and Human Services said they are working to get photographs of girls and toddlers.
25/ New investigation with @reveal: Several companies that house migrant children have employed workers accused of sexual misconduct and abuse.
26/ An update: More than 2,300 children have been separated from their parents under the Trump administration's policy of "zero-tolerance" for illegal border crossers.
27/ The youngest children separated from their parents at the border — some of them infants — are housed in three “tender age” shelters in South Texas.

28/ We're watching these developments from the @AP.

29/ NEW: Donald Trump says he'll "sign something" to keep immigrant families together.
30/ Updating: President Donald Trump said Wednesday morning that he would sign an executive order to end family separations.
31/ We're still updating our explainer. What's happening at the border? Here's what we know about immigrant children being separated from their families.
32/ This thread has everything we know about Texas-regulated facilities holding migrant children — including violations, numbers and more.

33/ Donald Trump has signed an executive order to end the family separations, though he said the "zero-tolerance policy" will continue.
34/ For families who have already been separated, Donald Trump's executive order may not help.

35/ A lot of people have asked us: Can I foster one of the unaccompanied immigrant children?

The Office of Refugee Resettlement requires that all people who want to foster one of the unaccompanied immigrant children be fully licensed by their state.
36/ We have polling out now about how Texans feel about the policy of separating immigrant children from their parents.

Male Republicans support separating families trying to cross illegally into the U.S. from Mexico, but most other groups do not.
37/ The First Lady is reportedly at the border.

38/ Federal authorities will no longer file criminal charges against migrant parents who cross into the United States illegally, reports the @washingtonpost:
39/ UPDATE: Border Patrol will no longer refer parents who cross into the US illegally with children to federal courthouses to face charges, reports the @washingtonpost.

This story has been updated to clarify how migrant parents will be processed.
40/ First Lady Melania Trump made an unannounced trip to the border on Thursday, visiting a children's shelter in McAllen. A spokesperson said she "supports family reunification," and wanted to meet separated children for herself.
41/ Southwest Key, a Texas-based company that houses nearly half of all undocumented children in federal custody, says it knows the locations of the parents of separated children in its care.
42/ The Trump administration is considering housing up to 20,000 unaccompanied migrant children on military bases in coming months, reports the @washingtonpost.
43/ Mayors from across the country tried to visit a tent city holding immigrant children in Texas. They had questions, but they didn't get answers.
44/ From @reveal: Melania Trump visits shelters for immigrant children with history of delaying medical care for kids.
45/ Reminder: We're still covering this story.

Follow reporters here:

Ask us questions here:
46/ Days of heavy rain and flooding in South Texas have prompted Gov. Greg Abbott to issue a disaster declaration for six counties — including areas that have been ground zero for the immigration crisis.
47/ Mayors from around the country spoke out against family separations in front the "tent city" in Tornillo, Texas. Here are photos by @i_p_a_1 of the scene.
@i_p_a_1 48/ We're still updating our explainer. What will happen to the kids already separated from their parents? Here's what we know about the “zero tolerance" policy.
49/ President Trump says he can prosecute all illegal border crossings without splitting up families. But it's going to be hard to do that without breaking a legal settlement.
50/ Japanese-Americans who were imprisoned at a South Texas internment camp are watching the border crisis unfold. For them, the trauma inflicted on migrant children who have been separated from their parents is all too familiar.
51/ As of Thursday, there were nearly 5,000 unaccompanied migrant children living in 31 shelters across Texas — close to their capacity. Here's what we know about those facilities:
52/ The Trump administration said its #zerotolerance immigration policy is still in effect this week —but the top federal prosecutor in one of Texas' busiest border districts started dropping charges there. Confusion ensued:
53/ NEW: Trump's demand for an executive order on #borderseparatinos spurred a week of chaos, culminating Friday w/ ICE investigating how it might expand its family detention capacity fivefold, “to accommodate up to 15,000 beds.” via @washingtonpost
/54 NEAR EL PASO: U.S. Reps. @BetoORourke & @JoaquinCastrotx arrived in Tornillo, Texas, today to tour temporary detention facilities housing immigrant minors separated from their parents. (📸: @SalgadoPhoto_)
Update from Tornillo #TentCity, per U.S. Reps. @BetoORourke & @JoaquinCastrotx:
— At least 7 girls between ages 13 and 17 being held in Tornillo
— Some parents of Central American child detainees have already been deported
The latest from @nachoaguilar:
56/ Confusion over #zerotolerance continues, as hundreds of families apparently evade it. One Guatemalan woman carrying infant son was strapped with ankle monitor and put on a bus to McAllen with other migrant mothers. @alexazura reports: 📸: @bobdphoto
57/ In Saturday night statement, Trump administration said it has reunited 522 migrant children separated from their parents during #ZeroTolerance and outlined plans to reunite 2,053 more:

Full @dhsgov declaration:…
58/ EXCLUSIVE: Central American detainees being held near Houston say they're being promised reunification w/ kids if they agree to sign voluntary deportation orders. One Honduran man says he agreed out of "desperation." @byjayroot @ShannonNajma report:
59/ @TexasTribune was at the U.S.-Mexico border all weekend, with reporters, photographers and videographers documenting Trump's #zerotolerance reversal, the release of some immigrants and the ongoing detention of others. More scenes:
60/ U.S. Reps. @JoaquinCastrotx and @BetoORourke toured the #Tornillo detention camp on Saturday, where nearly 300 undocumented minors were still being held — including some whose parents have been deported.
61/ Migrants are pleading for information on their kids. Read what they're saying here.
62/ Migrant child facilities are scattered across America. Here's a national map from the @washingtonpost:
63/ Reporters got a look inside "tent city" in Tornillo where migrant kids are being held. Here is what they saw.…
64/ MORE: Here are photos from inside the "tent city" that is housing migrant children in Tornillo, Texas. The contract for the detention center near El Paso expires July 13th, and the commander there does not anticipate it will be extended.
65/ These photos were provided by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
66/ The CBP commissioner said for now, the agency is not referring immigrant families for criminal prosecution. He said President Trump’s executive order to keep families together prompted the decision.
67/ Two Texas military bases — Fort Bliss near El Paso and Goodfellow Air Force Base in San Angelo — will soon house migrants who were detained after crossing the border illegally.
68/ These migrant parents are lucky in one respect: they were released instead of being detained indefinitely under the “zero tolerance” policy. Now the struggle is finding their children. Photos by @i_p_a_1
69/ The psychiatrist who has been prescribing powerful psychotropic medications to immigrant children in Texas has practiced without board certification to treat adolescents for nearly a decade. From @reveal:
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