UPDATED 1:45 PM PT — Wednesday, August 21, 2019
The Trump administration has unveiled a regulation that would allow it to detain, indefinitely, migrant families who cross the border illegally.
At a news conference Wednesday, acting Secretary of Homeland Security Kevin McAleenan announced the new directive, which would establish standards for conditions in detention centers and abolish the 20 day limit on detaining families in immigration centers.
The move is the latest effort by the administration to restrict illegal immigration and deter more migrants from crossing the border.
“By eliminating the incentive to make the journey the United States as a family, the new rule would reduce the unprecedented volume of family units that have strained the already limited resources of our department components and put children throughout the region at risk,” explained McAleenan.
Under the new rule, the administration would be free to send families who are caught crossing the border illegally to a family residential center to be held for as long as it takes for their immigration cases to be decided.
The new regulation now requires approval from a federal judge and is expected to be challenged in court.