The fate of immigrants seeking asylum in California and other states has been placed in the hands of the federal government and the American Civil Liberties Union. A federal judge ruled on Aug. 17 that they must create a plan to address parents and children separated at the border with Mexico. On Aug. 16, a judge froze the deportations of parents and children who had been reunified after initially being separated.
In the Aug. 17 ruling, the judge found that deporting those seeking asylum could violate due process rights. It also said that hastily returning asylum seekers home may not be in the public's best interest. There are still 366 parents who have yet to be united with their children, and some were deported under the false pretense of being able to see their kids again. According to a representative for the ACLU, parents who were deported should be allowed back into the country to help their kids through the asylum process.
However, the government says that some of the parents signed documents waiving the right for their children to pursue asylum. Therefore, the government's position is that both the parents and the children should be deported immediately. The judge initially put the freeze in place on July 16 and has said that continuing the freeze wouldn't be a strain on the government.
Those who have a fear of persecution in their country of origin may be eligible for asylum in the United States. Asylum may also be granted to those who fear domestic or gang violence in their home country. Individuals who wish to seek protection in the United States may benefit from consulting with an attorney. Legal counsel may work to preserve an immigrant's right to due process.