New Rule Seeks to End Flores Agreement and Indefinitely Detain Immigrant Children

August 21, 2019

WASHINGTON—Today, the Trump administration announced that it will publish a new regulation on Friday that allows for the indefinite detention of immigrant children. The rule will terminate the Flores Settlement Agreement, which currently requires that the government hold children in the least restrictive setting and release them as quickly as possible, generally within 20 days. Volumes of evidence show that detaining children indefinitely is harmful to their well-being and puts them at risk unnecessarily.  

The following statement is from Beth Werlin, executive director of the American Immigration Council:  

“The Trump administration’s rule ending the decades-old Flores Settlement Agreement will punish children and families who come to the United States seeking protection from persecution by allowing the government to detain them indefinitely. This announced rule is inhumane, undermines our values of compassion and fairness, and will unnecessarily traumatize thousands of children and their families.  

“The Flores agreement sets minimum standards for the detention, release, and treatment of immigrant children. The elimination of critical safeguards and protections will lead to the suffering of thousands of immigrant children held in immigration detention centers.  

“The administration’s harsh and cruel treatment of families must stop. There are alternatives to detention that are more humane, less costly to American taxpayers, and just as effective in ensuring that individuals comply with their obligations as they move through their immigration proceedings.” 


For more information, contact:  

Royce Murray at the American Immigration Council, [email protected] or 202-507-7510.  

Media Contact

Elyssa Pachico
[email protected]

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