Stop Detaining Families at Immigration Detention Centers, Democrats Say

“That isn’t to say everyone who comes here has the right to stay here forever. There are laws that are going to be applied and processes. You have to meet the standards. You should have the opportunity to be heard in an orderly way, but certainly locking up women and children in a jail is not what America is all about,” she said.

U.S. District Judge Dolly Gee recently ruled that the detention of a migrant family with their mother violates a 1997 court settlement.

Early this month, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokesman Richard Rocha said DHS determined reconsideration is appropriate for “custody decisions” related to arriving families that establish eligibility for asylum or other relief under the nation’s laws.

“Going forward, ICE will generally not detain mothers with children, absent a threat to public safety or national security, if they have received a positive finding for credible or reasonable fear and the individual has provided a verifiable residential address,” he said.

“As a result, DHS will be releasing eligible family units after a review has been conducted. Such eligible individuals will generally be released on Orders of Recognizance or Orders of Supervision, subject to appropriate conditions.”

Rocha said the field office monitoring a family member’s case would determine the appropriate Alternative to Detention (ATD) program levels throughout immigration court proceedings.