SAN DIEGO (CNS) - A San Diego-based federal judge late Tuesday night ordered a halt to the practice of separating children from their parents entering the U.S. without legal permission and for children to be reunited with their parents.
U.S. District Court Judge Dana M. Sabraw ruled that all children under 5 years old must be reunited with their parents within 14 days and children over 5 years old be reunited within 30 days.
Sabraw, an appointee of George W. Bush, also ordered that U.S Immigration and Customs Enforcement "must immediately take all steps necessary to facilitate regular communication" between parents and children who remain in Office of Refugee Resettlement custody or foster care, or Department of Homeland Security custody.
Within 10 days, ICE "must provide parents telephonic contact with their children if the parent is not already in contact with his or her child," Sabraw ruled in the nationwide preliminary injunction.
"This ruling is an enormous victory for parents and children who thought they may never see each other again," said Lee Gelernt, deputy director of the ACLU's Immigrants' Rights Project who argued the case."