Acting DHS chief to testify on separation of migrant children later this month

Acting DHS chief to testify on separation of migrant children later this month
© Greg Nash

Acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan will testify before the House Oversight and Reform Committee on the separation of immigrant families later this month.

The committee announced on Wednesday that McAleenan will appear on July 18 after originally being invited to testify on this Friday.

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“The American people are deeply concerned about the inhumane detention centers at the border and the number of children separated from their families,” committee Chairman Elijah CummingsElijah Eugene CummingsFormer Cummings staffer unveils congressional bid McCarthy, GOP face a delicate dance on Jan. 6 committee Five big questions about the Jan. 6 select committee MORE (D-Md.) said in a statement.

“We look forward to hearing about the steps necessary to correct this crisis manufactured by the Trump Administration.”

The hearing will be the second of two focused on conditions faced by immigrants at the southern border.

On June 12, outside experts and Department of Homeland Security acting Inspector General Jennifer Costello and Health and Human Services Assistant Inspector General Ann Maxwell will testify before the committee on immigrant detention facilities.

The hearings follow the release of two new Homeland Security inspector general reports describing “dangerous overcrowding and prolonged detention” of immigrant children and adults at facilities in El Paso, Texas, and the Rio Grande Valley that require “immediate attention and action.”

The hearings will also likely focus on the conditions revealed by those reports and a visit that a group of lawyers made last month at a facility in Clint, Texas.

Delegations of Democratic lawmakers also visited that facility, and another in Homestead, Fla., late last month, bringing more attention to conditions they described as inhumane.

The Trump administration has maintained that the reports of troubling conditions are inaccurate.

McAleenan on Sunday called the allegations of mistreatment, specifically of children, "unsubstantiated."