Family Detention | Texas Public Radio

Family Detention

Updated at 3:34 p.m. ET

The Trump administration has announced it is ending a federal court agreement that limits how long migrant families with children can be detained.

Acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan outlined the new policy Wednesday, which replaces the Flores settlement agreement.

That's been a longtime target of immigration hard-liners in the Trump administration, who contend the settlement has acted as a lure to families in Central America.

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Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Kevin McAleenan announced changes just this morning to how long government can detain migrant children. Here he is.


Customs and Border Protection officials are denying that a Border Patrol agent asked a 3-year-old girl to choose which of her parents would be sent back to Mexico.

Updated at 6:40 p.m. ET Monday

The Trump administration's immigration policies have drawn condemnation, but increasingly the criticism has also turned to a web of companies that are part of the multibillion-dollar industry that runs detention facilities housing tens of thousands of migrants around the country.

Businesses that supply goods and services to support those detention centers face increasing public and political scrutiny from investors, employees and activists.

Laurie Cook Heffron, a licensed social worker and professor of Social Work at St. Edward’s University in Austin, is co-author of the study “Latina Immigrant Women and Children’s Well-Being and Access to Services after Detention” with licensed psychologist, Gabriela Hurtado and Josie Serrata of Casa de Esperanza: National Latin@ Network for Health Families and Communities.

Norma Martinez / Texas Public Radio

Family separation. Detainees living in uncertainty, wondering why they are being held, where they are being held, where their loved ones are, and when they will be released.

This isn’t a scene from 2018 or 2019. This is a scene from seven decades ago when Japanese citizens living in the U.S. and Japanese Americans were all told to report themselves for ‘relocation’ during World War II.

One of those relocation camps was the Crystal City Internment Camp, about a two-hour drive southwest of San Antonio.

Will Sansom / UT Health San Antonio

Updated Dec. 12


Advocates for detained migrants in Texas met San Antonio medical students to discuss forming future partnerships that could help improve the health and well-being of people hoping to immigrate to the U.S.

File Photo / NPR

Updated Oct. 25

Two family detention centers in Texas currently hold several dozen immigrant families. They had been reunited in July but then officials with Immigration and Customs Enforcement returned them to detention, where they have languished for months.

More than 400 migrant children remain separated from their parents two months after the court-ordered deadline for the Trump administration to reunite them. Meanwhile, immigration officials are preparing to restart asylum hearings for up to 1,000 separated families thanks to a deal brokered by the ACLU.

Here & Now‘s Jeremy Hobson speaks with USA Today immigration reporter Alan Gomez (@alangomez).

Updated at 3:45 p.m. ET

The Trump administration is proposing to lift court-imposed limits on how long it can hold children in immigration detention.