Grassley of Iowa and Californiaâ€šÃ "Ã´s Dianne Feinstein have written to the inspectors general of the departments of Homeland Security, and Health and Human Services, that the allegations are â€šÃ "Ãºextremely disturbing and must be addressed". Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) whether any thought the policy of separating children from their parents at the border had been a success. White is a career official at HHS who has served in three administrations.
Republicans and Democrats grilled immigration and border enforcement officials at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing over a series of decisions in recent months that led to the separation of more than 2,500 undocumented migrant children from their parents or guardians.
"The witnesses who testified (on Tuesday) couldn't answer some basic, serious questions about the implementation of the policy of separating parents and children with no plan to reunite them", said Sarah Turberville, director of the group's Constitution Project.
Officials from ICE and Health and Human Services said they keep records of migrants who have been detained and have documentation of parents who left the US without their children.
"These individuals have access to 24/7 food and water", Albence said. They have educational opportunities.
Shiloh is a collection of trailers and small buildings that can house up to 44 children, 32 of them migrants, according to the Center for Investigative Reporting, which has reported extensively on the facility. Sabraw showered White with praise for his reunification plan, and for his willingness to accept the "undisputed facts that have led to this hard situation" and the "responsibility" of the government to fix it.
To prove his point, Albence said during Tuesday's Senate hearing that of the 75,000 immigrants now in those programs, only 2,430 were deported in fiscal year 2017.
While some Republicans offered measured criticism of the problem, Democrats ridiculed Mr. Trump's immigration policies as cruel and bungling. Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin of IL went as far as to call for the resignation of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen to step down, calling her the "architect of this humanitarian disaster" at the border. "Separation of children from their parents entails significant risk of harm to children". He cited the often frantically crowded Chuck E. Cheese children's restaurants as having procedures that work.
After being asked if they would feel comfortable sending their own children there, one panelist, Jennifer Higgins, said, "That's a hard question to answer". "Every night the child is going to sleep thinking, 'Am I ever going to see my parents again?' It doesn't matter whether they are in palaces".
The threat came on top of another fiery tweet posted earlier on the same day, which said: "Please understand, there are consequences when people cross our Border illegally, whether they have children or not - and many are just using children for their own sinister purposes".
But lawmakers on both sides of the aisle were sharply critical of the family separations and pressed officials to explain what went wrong. For the Public Health Service, parents leaving without their children undergo an interview and then sign a form designating who will care for the children, White said.
When asked how many of those immigrants were not deported because they won their asylum case, ICE said it did not track that data.