From RAICES, FWD.us, and Families Belong Together:
Thousands of immigrant children and parents separated by the Trump Administration will be reunified as three leading immigrant rights groups announced a major new multi-million dollar funding commitment to pay for “Flights for Families” torn apart by the immoral family separation policy.
While the Administration and Congress have failed to reunify all the families separated at the border, RAICES, FWD.us and the Families Belong Together coalition have stepped into the breach, announcing today that they are supercharging their combined efforts to date to speed family reunifications by paying for flights and assisting with travel logistics.
The funding commitment, made possible by an unprecedented outpouring of grassroots donations from concerned Americans to the groups over the last several months, includes initial support of $3 million from RAICES, the largest legal services non-profit in Texas.
The expanded “Flights for Families” effort will consist of a “travel help desk” to accommodate reunified families with temporary housing upon reunification and release and pay for travel to their post-release destinations. The help desk provides logistics planning, travel booking, and other assistance to families being reunited and those engaged in supporting that process, such as family members, attorneys and case workers. All of these services are provided free of cost. The Travel Desk provides on-site rapid response and is already operational.
Lawyers, friends, and families can obtain support by completing the travel assistance request form.
While reliable numbers have been hard to come by, as many as 3,000 children may have been separated from their parents at the border. The Trump Administration has dragged its feet on reunifications, missing court-ordered deadlines and admitting last week that they never planned to reunite migrant children with their parents, until a court struck their inhumane policy down.
The need to reunify children as quickly as possible is urgent. Doctors and experts warn that separating children from their parents causes long-term mental and emotional trauma and babies the Administration took away months ago are now toddlers who no longer recognize their parents.