While family unity is often a result of KIND’s work, we also work to prevent family separation in its many forms.
While the Zero Tolerance policy of the previous Administration is thankfully behind us, children seeking safety in the United States are often taken from their nonparental caregivers at the U.S.-Mexico border. U.S. policy does not immediately recognize grandparents, aunts, uncles, or other family members who may have been the child’s primary guardian in their home country but do not have legal paperwork to prove the relationship. Being taken from these family members – who can be like a parent to a child and on whom the child is solely dependent – is devastating. KIND supports the Biden Administration’s Trusted Adult Relative Program to quickly process and reunite separated nonparental families.
The Biden Administration’s new asylum ban – implemented on May 11 as the restrictive Title 42 border policy ended – could also lead to new family separations. The new policy, Circumvention of Lawful Pathways, places a near-ban on asylum eligibility for children, families, and others seeking U.S. protection under the guise of creating safe pathways for legal migration. The proposed rule is inconsistent with U.S. and international refugee law, will put children at greater risk of harm, and likely lead to more family separations. Families unable to apply for asylum at the U.S.-Mexico border as a result of the ban and forced to remain in dangerous conditions in Mexico may send their child to the border in a desperate attempt to give their child a chance at safety. KIND is monitoring the impact of this new policy and will do all it can to ensure the protection of these children.
On this International Day of the Family, KIND reiterates our commitment to the protection unaccompanied immigrant and refugee children and their reunification with family whenever possible and when in the best interest of the child. Join KIND in urging the Biden administration and Congress to ensure the orderly and humane reception of asylum seekers at the U.S.-Mexico border. Sign a petition urging Congress to Support Funding to Reunite Separated Families here.