Council Sues Trump Administration for Records on Treatment of Migrant Children During COVID-19 Pandemic


U.S. Customs and Border Protection may have mistreated migrant children when implementing the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention interim final rule that suspends people from entering the United States due to the COVID 19 pandemic.

The rule violates the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act which provides various procedural safeguards to unaccompanied migrant children. This includes how children must be housed when in government custody and the right to appear before an immigration judge to present their case..

To determine to what extent CBP has violated its obligations under the law, the American Immigration Council, with the Center for the Human Rights of Children at Loyola University Chicago School of Law and the Illinois Chapter of the American Pediatric Association filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for information on its policies and the impact on migrant children.

But CBP failed to release this critical information. The Council and the Center for the Human Rights of Children has now filed a lawsuit. We seek to compel the agency to release records related to the numbers of migrant children who have been affected, the conditions of care provided by CBP to migrant children held in non-licensed facilities, and safeguards against abuse or maltreatment of migrant children impacted by the interim final rule. 

The lawsuit was filed in the Northern District of Illinois.

Follow this case:

  • October 30, 2020
    Children and immigration advocacy groups filed a lawsuit in the Northern District of Illinois against CBP requesting information about the agency’s implementation of the CDC rule suspending people from entering the United States due to the COVID 19 pandemic and its specific impact on unaccompanied migrant children fleeing harm and seeking protection in the United States.

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