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Inside the Herculean Effort to Reunite Parents and Kids Split Up by President Trump’s Family Separation Policy

Dora Melara has led painstaking searches in Honduras to find dozens of parents separated from their children under the Trump administration’s zero tolerance immigration policy.

“One of the difficulties we have is that you’ll go to the reference address and maybe the person never went back there,” Melara told Business Insider. Or, “there’s a possible address, not even exact.”

The Trump administration’s family separation policy was relatively short-lived. But the process of locating the parents and reuniting families has dragged on. Now, it falls on the Biden administration to complete the untangling of the policy and address the lasting impacts of trauma.

Government lawyers have been tasked with scouring records from the Departments of Homeland Security and Health and Human Services to discover, first, which children in its custody arrived with their parents, and whether files for those family members can be located.

“The data has been so spotty. It’s obvious that recording families, tracking them in any meaningful way to facilitate reunification… was not a concern, not a priority, not done,” said Leah Chavla senior policy advisor at the Women’s Refugee Commission.

In addition to Business Insider, this article also appeared in Yahoo News.