Trump Administration Moves to Hold Migrant Families Longer

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Department of Homeland Security acting Secretary Kevin McAleenan holds a news conference to announce new rules about how migrant children and families are treated in federal custody at the Ronald Reagan Building August 21, 2019 in Washington, DC.  (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Today the Trump administration announced that the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Health and Human Services will withdraw from the 1997 Flores Settlement Agreement and replace it with a new rule on Friday. Until now, the Flores Agreement has set the basic conditions and length of time migrant children and teens can be detained. The Trump administration believes this move will deter families from crossing the border, but advocates fear this new rule will lead to longer, more traumatic and riskier child detentions. Forum takes a closer look at what the end of the Flores Settlement Agreement means for migrants and the U.S.'s greater immigration policy.


Ted Hesson, immigration reporter, Politico

Bill Ong Hing, professor of law and migration studies, University of San Francisco; author, "American Presidents and Immigration Policy"