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Hear emotional phone calls from parents separated from their kids

As a result of the Trump administration's zero tolerance policy, some parents have been separated from their kids for more than 30 days. Parents are forced to comfort their frightened children over the phone.

Posted: Jul 8, 2018 7:58 PM
Updated: Jul 8, 2018 7:58 PM

How many immigrant families have been reunited since a judge ordered the US government to halt most family separations at the border?

And how many kids from separated immigrant families are still in government custody?

We don't know, because officials aren't saying.

It's been more than a week since they released a tally of how many kids from separated families remain in government custody.

And officials have repeatedly declined to respond to questions about how many families have been reunited.

Deadlines are looming; the government has less than a month to reunite the families it separated. Here's the latest:

On June 20, the Department of Health and Human Services said there were 2,053 children from separated families in its care. On June 26, the agency said there were 2,047 such children.

Why haven't officials released updated figures since then? According to HHS, it's because the number of immigrant children in the agency's care is always in flux -- and because they are working with other agencies to cross-check the numbers they have.

Federal officials have released updated statements revealing the total number of immigrant children in their care -- a figure that includes children who crossed the border alone and children who were separated from their families after crossing. But since June 26, they've refused to specify how many kids from separated families remain in custody.

Here's why that particular statistic matters: It's the only figure officials have provided that gives us any indication of whether reunions are happening.

This isn't a perfect equation; we don't know whether the children released from HHS custody were reunited with parents -- only that they're no longer in one of the agency's shelters. The government has not answered questions about the circumstances of their release.

But without a response to questions about how many reunions have occurred -- or at least an updated figure on the number of kids from separated families who remain in custody -- the public has no way to track whether families are being reunited or how quickly it's occurring. All we have are anecdotal examples of a few scattered reunions at airports.

The latest information we have was provided to CNN by a US government source: a map showing that the 2,047 separated unaccompanied minors who were in custody of the HHS Office of Refugee Resettlement as of June 25 were scattered across 16 states.

In response to CNN inquiries asking for updated statistics on the number of kids from separated families in custody, officials have released the following statement:

"As HHS continues to evaluate the impact of the District Court ruling, and given the constantly changing number of unaccompanied alien children in our care (every day minors are referred to our care and released from our care to parents, close relatives or suitable sponsors), we are providing the total number of unaccompanied alien children in the care of HHS-funded grantees. While we understand the interest in detailed breakdowns of this information, our mission has been and remains to provide every minor transferred to HHS, regardless of the circumstances, with quality and age-appropriate care and a speedy and safe release to a sponsor."

On June 26, US District Judge Dana Sabraw laid out a series of deadlines in his ruling.

By July 6, officials must make sure every separated parent has a way to contact their child. By July 10, children under 5 must be reunited with their parents. And by July 26, all children should be reunited with their parents.

Officials have said they'll comply with the judge's order, but they haven't specified what steps they'll take to do that. They are scheduled to appear in court on Friday for a status hearing.

Attorneys for the ACLU, which has sued the government over the family separations practice, say they are monitoring the situation and will go back to the court if officials fail to comply with the deadlines.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 259117

Reported Deaths: 5668
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto17436187
Hinds16524328
Harrison13876199
Rankin11000217
Jackson10652187
Lee8981141
Madison8413168
Jones6552112
Forrest6101121
Lauderdale6034189
Lowndes5463119
Lafayette507393
Lamar496465
Washington4877124
Bolivar4068109
Oktibbeha401681
Panola378380
Pontotoc372155
Monroe3628105
Warren3619101
Union350563
Marshall349569
Neshoba3433152
Pearl River3380104
Leflore3079108
Lincoln300687
Sunflower289272
Hancock285360
Tate276762
Alcorn268854
Pike266580
Itawamba266261
Scott253448
Yazoo250156
Prentiss249552
Tippah245850
Copiah244549
Coahoma243654
Simpson240069
Leake234367
Grenada221171
Marion218473
Covington216972
Adams210170
Wayne206432
Winston205267
George202739
Attala195761
Newton195745
Tishomingo192461
Chickasaw186144
Jasper176038
Holmes169868
Clay162735
Tallahatchie154935
Stone148424
Clarke143562
Calhoun138021
Smith125825
Yalobusha120234
Walthall113437
Greene112129
Noxubee111425
Montgomery110936
Carroll105922
Lawrence104317
Perry103231
Amite99926
Webster94324
Tunica87621
Jefferson Davis87327
Claiborne86825
Benton84023
Humphreys83624
Kemper79120
Quitman7029
Franklin68716
Choctaw62313
Wilkinson58825
Jefferson55920
Sharkey44217
Issaquena1606
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 432536

Reported Deaths: 6379
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson63523957
Mobile30967562
Madison27627201
Tuscaloosa21122268
Montgomery19495326
Shelby18941126
Baldwin16798188
Lee12901102
Morgan12447129
Etowah11911178
Calhoun11365205
Marshall10322119
Houston8813156
Limestone823176
Cullman8159106
Elmore8056104
DeKalb7796102
Lauderdale773399
St. Clair7705122
Talladega6347109
Walker5993174
Jackson590341
Colbert543274
Blount541186
Autauga527061
Coffee454160
Dale405482
Franklin371948
Russell345712
Chilton340972
Covington334168
Escambia328344
Dallas310196
Chambers297370
Clarke290536
Tallapoosa2665107
Pike258830
Marion250155
Lawrence249150
Winston231442
Bibb219848
Geneva206946
Marengo205229
Pickens198631
Hale180842
Barbour177836
Fayette174528
Butler171358
Cherokee162530
Henry157523
Monroe150718
Randolph143236
Washington139527
Clay128546
Crenshaw121644
Cleburne119724
Lamar119621
Macon119637
Lowndes112536
Wilcox105822
Bullock101428
Perry99118
Conecuh96320
Sumter89726
Greene76723
Coosa62215
Choctaw51624
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