Women’s Refugee Commission Condemns the Biden Administration’s Decision to Walk Away from Settlement Negotiations with Separated Families
Washington, D.C. — In response to reports that the U.S. Department of Justice withdrew from settlement negotiations in the class action lawsuits on behalf of family members who were separated under the Trump administration’s Zero-Tolerance Policy, Katharina Obser, director of the Migrant Rights and Justice program at Women’s Refugee Commission, issued the following statement:
“The Women’s Refugee Commission is deeply disappointed by reports that the Biden administration has walked away from settlement negotiations in the class action lawsuits filed on behalf of families who were separated under the Trump administration’s Zero Tolerance policy. The separation of parents from their children — a policy that was intentionally cruel and traumatic — will forever be a stain on this country’s history. While the U.S. can never undo what happened, we expected the Biden administration to engage in good faith with efforts for redress and repair.
“The separation these families endured constitutes torture. The cruelty of intentionally tearing families apart inflicted unspeakable and permanent trauma on children and their parents coming to the U.S. border seeking safety. The Women’s Refugee Commission continues to call for justice and accountability for each of the families who were ripped apart — in some cases permanently — by the Trump administration. This move is a shameful, profound betrayal of the government’s responsibility to redress the harms of this heinous policy.”