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The Trump administration may have separated hundreds of parents from their children without consent, a new DHS report finds

  • At least 348 parents were separated from their children without any evidence they consented.
  • That finding stems from an investigation by the Department of Homeland Security’s Inspector General.
  • The Trump administration broke apart some families despite pleas from parents, the report found.
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

The Trump administration broke apart some migrant families despite explicit pleas from parents that their children be deported along with them, according to a newly published report from the Department of Homeland Security’s Inspector General.

As Insider has reported, hundreds of children remain separated from their parents, thanks to the previous administration’s policy of refusing to allow migrant adults to pursue their cases for asylum alongside their kids. Some parents, given no other choice, elected to leave their children behind to pursue their cases while they were sent back, via US Customs and Immigration Enforcement, to countries such as Guatemala and Honduras.

But according to the report from the DHS’s Inspector General, some of those parents may not have agreed to that at all. “In fact, ICE removed some parents without their children despite having evidence the parents wanted to bring the children back to their home country,” the report stated.

At least 348 parents were separated from their kids without the Trump administration documenting whether or not they agreed.

The American Civil Liberties Union, which sued over the family separation policy, said the new report bolsters its own findings.

“The report is consistent with the horrifying facts we discovered in the litigation: that parents were deported without the opportunity to bring their children with them,”ACLU staff attorney Lee Gelernt told Insider. “Throughout the litigation, we learned that some parents were even told their child would join them on the plane only to have the plane take off without the child.”

According to another recent report by the Department of Justice’s Inspector General, the former president and his top aides “aggressively” pushed for that policy of family separation to discourage people from seeking asylum, a legally protected right.

President Joe Biden has vowed to reunite those who were affected by the policy of breaking up families. A DHS spokesperson on Monday told NBC News the latest revelations “are a tragic reminder of how parents and children were cruelly separated by the prior administration.”

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