Migrant minors in detention centers in the U.S. Source: AP.
Migrant minors in detention centers in the U.S. Source: AP.

New report confirms the disaster of the zero tolerance policy

The government was not prepared to implement the Trump administration's "zero tolerance" policy and still insists on blaming others for the disaster.


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The government of Donald Trump has been characterized, among other things, for not agreeing on how to make public its controversial policies.

Since Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the implementation of the “zero tolerance” policy against immigration, its measures and consequences have snowballed into what can only be described as absolute chaos.

The measures were implemented during April with a protocol stating that federal authorities must proceed to separate children from parents, relatives or other adults who accompany them when crossing the border without documents.

The adults then go on to be prosecuted on criminal charges and confined to federal jails while the children go into the custody of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).

The result has been the separation of almost 3,000 children from their parents, saturating the housing capacities that the government possessed.

The logic indicates that families are being separated, but the government has argued that it has nothing to do with separation but with "avoiding the trafficking of children" or the exploitation of minors.

In June, Kirstjen Nielsen, the Secretary of the Department of National Security (DHS), assured that the government "is not doing any of that" but only focusing on "enforcing the laws approved by Congress," which has given President Trump the opportunity to reinterpret her words and adjudicate the blame for the separation of families on "the Democrats."

However, new documents made public by Open the Government show that the internal decision to separate families was approved in writing by Nielsen.

Between bickering and wrangling, the government has demonstrated an internal chaos that includes the implementation of new policies which appear to be handled too quickly, all in order to oppose immigration in the country.

Evidence of this was the unpublished report by the internal watchdog of the DHS, to which the Washington Post had access, and which explains in detail the government's lack of preparation to implement its ambitious measures.

The text reads:

DHS was not fully prepared to implement the Administration’s Zero Tolerance Policy or to deal with some of its after-effects. Faced with resource limitations and other challenges, DHS regulated the number of asylum-seekers entering the country through ports of entry at the same time that it encouraged asylum-seekers to come to the ports. During Zero Tolerance, CBP also held alien children separated from their parents for extended periods in facilities intended solely for short-term detention.

DHS also struggled to identify, track, and reunify families separated under Zero Tolerance due to limitations with its information technology systems, including a lack of integration between systems.

Finally, DHS provided inconsistent information to aliens who arrived with children during Zero Tolerance, which resulted in some parents not understanding that they would be separated from their children and being unable to communicate with their children after separation.

The question that arises from this information seems to be the same everywhere: if the government was not prepared, what was the hurry to implement this type of measure? Was it really necessary?

According to DHS spokeswoman Katie Waldman, the report only "illustrates the difficulties in enforcing immigration laws that are broken and are poorly written," she told NBC.

In conclusion, the government insists on reinventing laws that it doesn’t agree with through strategies that only add fuel to the fire.


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