Children separated from their families are facing lifelong mental and physical health challenges as a result of their separation, according to a new Office of Inspector General report.
The list of impacts is long and they are likely to last far beyond the physical separation and time in custody.
The Trump administration implemented new policies that increased the number of children separated from their parents or guardians, sparking outrage and this OIG review. In its report, the OIG found the government and its contracted facilities are facing challenges in treating the children in its custody and care.
A public health expert told congresswoman Cheri Bustos separation, other than for strict causes, is preventable. He asked the committee for Congress to pass a law defining how and when separation can occur.
The OIG made six recommendations in total to assist facilities in coping with this issue, including addressing gaps in options for children who require more specialized treatment. The report says all reasonable steps need to be taken to minimize the amount of time children are in custody.