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Davis Calls for HHS Secretary to Account For Separated Children

Congressman Danny K. Davis today called on Department of Health and
Human Services Secretary Alex Azar to cease evading and stonewalling
Congressional requests to appear in person before the Energy and
Commerce's Oversight Subcommittee and fully address the entire array
of questions regarding the thousands of children separated from their
parents seeking Refugee status in the United States.  Under the Trump
Administration's inhumane “zero-tolerance policy” these children were
forcefully separated from parents and effectively held hostage to
pressure families escaping horrific conditions in their home countries
by seeking Refugee status in the United States.

This week the Office of Inspector General (OIG), Department of Health
and Human Services (HHS), released a review conducted to "determine
the number and status of separated children (i.e., children separated
from their parent or legal guardian by DHS) who have entered Office of
Refugee Resettlement (ORR) care, including but not limited to the
subset of separated children covered by Ms. L v. ICE."  The OIG found
"The total number of children separated from a parent or guardian by
immigration authorities is unknown. Pursuant to a June 2018 Federal
District Court order, HHS has thus far identified 2,737 children in
its care at that time who were separated from their parents. However,
thousands of children may have been separated during an influx that
began in 2017, before the accounting required by the Court, and HHS
has faced challenges in identifying separated children."

Davis stated, "The policy and practice of separating Refugee children
from their families is heartless, inconsistent with international
norms, and unacceptable. It should be condemned as un-American.  Every
single one of these children is precious.  I call on HHS Secretary
Azar to fully cooperate with the appropriate Congressional Committees
to ensure that we are 1) protecting the health and well being of each
and every child, 2) providing full transparency and accountability for
the actions and responsibilities of HHS, and 3) moving to reunite
these innocents with their families forthwith."

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    repName Danny K. Davis  
    helpWithFedAgencyAddress Chicago District Office
    2813-15 W. Fifth Avenue
    Chicago, Illinois 60612
     
    district 7th District of Illinois  
    academyUSCitizenDate July 1, 2017  
    academyAgeDate July 1, 2017  
    academyApplicationDueDate October 20, 2017  
    repStateABBR Il  
    repDistrict 7  
    repState Illinois  
    repDistrictText 7th  
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