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Record #: R2018-684   
Type: Resolution Status: Adopted
Intro date: 6/27/2018 Current Controlling Legislative Body: Committee on Finance
Final action: 6/27/2018
Title: Denunciation of "zero tolerance" policy of separating families attempting entry into United States and call for federal government to cease implementation
Sponsors: Burke, Edward M., Villegas, Gilbert, Maldonado, Roberto, Moreno, Proco Joe, Arena, John, Munoz, Ricardo, Reboyras, Ariel, Lopez, Raymond A., Santiago, Milagros
Attachments: 1. R2018-684.pdf
WHEREAS, in May 2018, the number of migrant children in United States custody surged by 21% to 10,773 from 8,886 m April; and
WHEREAS, from April 19 to May 31. a total of 1,995 children who arrived with 1,940 adults were separated from them: and
WHEREAS, the increase is attributed to a newly-imposed "zero tolerance" policy of forcibly separating families attempting an illegal border crossing or who lawfully enter seeking asylum ("the policy''"); and
WHEREAS, the policy rolled out by United States Attorney General Jefferson Sessions and the Department of Homeland Security subjects those who cross the border illegally to criminal prosecution; and
WHEREAS, once the matter is classified as criminal, parents are jailed and, having effectively been separated, their children are sent to shelters or put into foster care as part of the system set up for "unaccompanied minors:" and
WHEREAS, this policy is a departure from previous approaches that generally had asylum-seeking migrant families processed by immigration courts through an administrative process mat allowed families to be detained together or released with notices to appear at subsequent court proceedings; and
WHEREAS, a U.S. Customs and Border Protection official testified at a Senate committee hearing in May that between May 6 and May 19, 201 8, 648 adults were referred for prosecution under the new zero-tolerance effort and that they had 658 children with them; and
WHEREAS, once separated and improperly reclassified as unaccompanied minors, children fall under the purview of the DHS Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR): and
WHEREAS, more than 10,000 children are currently in shelters run by ORR. which reports a network of approximately 100 shelters in 14 states: and
WHEREAS, the largest licensed migrant children's shelter in Texas houses 1,500 boys in a former Walmart store: and
WHEREAS, officials reported that, the shelters are at 95%. capacity and that, as part ofthe needed expansion, the agency is ...

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