Trump officials to propose plan for longer detention of migrant families with children: report

Trump officials to propose plan for longer detention of migrant families with children: report

The Trump administration is reportedly expected to introduce new rules aimed at allowing the government to keep migrant families with children in custody for longer than 20 days, the current limit for children detained after crossing the U.S.-Mexico border.

ABC News, citing two government officials familiar with the plan, reported on the development Tuesday night, noting that the administration could unveil the proposal as soon as Wednesday. 

The Department of Homeland Security did not immediately respond to requests for comment from The Hill and ABC News.


Under a court agreement known as the Flores Agreement, the government is not permitted to keep children in detention for longer than 20 days. Trump and other Republicans have repeatedly voiced outrage over the policy, arguing that it incentivizes migrants to arrive at the southern border with children. 

The Trump administration had pushed last year to alter the settlement in order to detain migrant children with their parents for longer periods of time as officials sought to limit the number of family separations at the border. A judge previously ruled against a similar effort.

Since the 1990s, courts have implemented regulations on how children should be cared for in detainment, ABC News noted.

The proposal would arrive at a time when the Trump administration faces increasing scrutiny over the conditions at its migrant detention facilities. Many Democratic lawmakers voiced outrage earlier this summer over reports of overcrowding and unsanitary conditions in its facilities. 

A federal appeals court ruled last week that the Trump administration must provide basic personal hygiene items to children in detention at facilities in the Rio Grande Valley in Texas.