As the Biden administration revamps the Trump-era "Remain in Mexico" policy, the Department of Homeland Security is highlighting the 284 children it has reunited with their families after they were caught illegally crossing the southern border.
At least 284 children have been reunited with their parents since September through a Biden administration program aimed at reversing the effects of the family separation policy.
The DHS sought to increase awareness of the program Monday — the same day President Joe Biden restarted the "Remain in Mexico" policy, which requires people caught crossing the border illegally to stay in Mexico while awaiting hearings instead of being released in the United States.
MIGRANTS FROM ALL OVER THE WORLD CROSS SOUTHERN BORDER IN RECORD NUMBERS
The DHS program includes websites in English and Spanish where families can register to be reunited in the U.S. free of charge, and most of the 284 children are from Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Brazil, or Venezuela.
Eligible families must have been separated at the southern border between Jan. 20, 2017, and Jan. 20, 2020, or the length of former President Donald Trump's time in office. This policy, which was enacted to avoid prosecuting minors, resulted in over 5,500 children being separated. Since then, thousands have been reunited, though nearly 1,500 children remain separated.
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If families who register through the program are approved, they are eligible for three years of work authorization, which can be renewed.
Trump's zero-tolerance policy for illegal border crossings has not been enforced since 2018, though the Biden administration is considering paying each family member affected by the policy $450,000 in damages.