President Joe Biden is taking action on immigration through executive orders, again looking to reverse Trump-era policies.
Late Tuesday afternoon, the president unveiled his latest executive directives, which include setting up a task force on family separation that will focus on reuniting parents and children who were separated at the southern border.
Court records show about 5,500 kids were removed from their parents’ custody during the Trump Administration. Some 600 children still haven’t been reunited with a parent.
Doral immigration lawyer Hector Benitez Cañas says many of those parents are poor farmworkers. The reunification process, he says, is not simple.
“They don’t have the access to the technology that we would require in order to get in touch with all of these people," Cañas said.
A second executive action will review what’s known as the "Remain in Mexico" policy, requiring asylum-seekers to stay in northern Mexico as they wait for court hearings in the U.S.
Florida Sen. Marco Rubio is critical of President Biden’s orders, releasing a statement reading in part, “More vaccines, COVID relief, policies that will help create good American jobs and confronting the threat from China are all more important right now than immigration reform.”
Many immigration advocates, like Florida Immigrant Coalition’s Maria Rodriguez, disagree with the senator and are looking to Washington for more.
“We are very vigilant to finding permanent solutions for the 11 million in this country, which is done for the benefit of them, for our moral and financial well-being as a country," Rodriguez said.