Durbin Statement On DHS IG Investigation Into Trump Administration's Family Separation Policy

Once again, Durbin calls on Secretary Nielsen to resign

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Ranking Member of the Senate’s Immigration Subcommittee, today released the following statement after the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Acting Inspector General released a report on the Trump Administration’s zero-tolerance policy.  The report, which Durbin and 23 of his Senate colleagues requested in March, found that “DHS was not fully prepared to implement the Administration’s Zero Tolerance Policy or to deal with some of its after-effects,” and “DHS 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.”

This devastating report confirms that the Department of Homeland Security was completely unprepared to implement the Trump Administration’s disastrous zero-tolerance policy.  The humanitarian crisis that resulted was not only predictable, but apparently orchestrated.  Thousands of children were separated from their parents, and months later, hundreds of families have still not been reunited due to a heartless mix of cruelty and incompetence.  Secretary Nielsen signed off on this family separation policy, falsely claimed that the policy did not exist, and then callously failed to address the policy’s tragic and inevitable fallout.  In light of this devastating report, Secretary Nielsen should resign.

Durbin’s request for this report followed press reports of the case of a seven-year-old girl and her mother from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) who were separated for more than four months after they presented themselves at the U.S. border and sought protection in accordance with the law.