KIND Statement on DOJ Decision to Abandon Settlement Negotiations with Separated Families

December 16, 2021

Washington, DC – In response to today’s announcement that Justice Department has withdrawn from ongoing global settlement negotiations to address harms done to families separated under the “zero tolerance” policy, Kids in Need of Defense President Wendy Young issued the following statement:

“The Department of Justice’s decision to withdraw from global settlement negotiations with families ripped apart by the Trump Administration’s ‘zero tolerance’ policy is simply unconscionable. Children were torn from their parents’ arms without a second thought or a clear government plan to ensure that they were reunified with their families. All too many of those families remain separated today; some may never be reunited. This unthinkable pain and suffering inflicted by the United States deserves accountability from an administration ostensibly working to make these families whole again. What we see in today’s announcement is an administration bowing to political pressure and skirting its responsibility to uphold a key promise to address the harms done to these children and their families.”


Media Contact: Megan McKenna,, 202-631-9990