On June 7th, 2023, the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration Integrity, Security, and Enforcement held a hearing with the Department of Homeland Security to determine if recent immigration policies violate the law and encourage undocumented immigration.

The hearing began with an opening statement from Subcommittee Chairman McClintock (R-CA), and Ranking Member Jayapal (D-WA).Testimonies were given by Mr. Wolf, Executive Director and Chief Strategy Officer at America First Policy Insitute and former Acting Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security; Mr. Edlow, Managing Member of Edlow Group and former Acting Director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services; Mr. Bradbury, Distinguished Fellow at Heritage Foundation; Mr. Reichlin-Melnick, Policy Director at American Immigration Council. Mr. Bradbury raised the issue of human trafficking and abuse in the immigration system and neighborhoods in the United States under the current Administration. Mr. Reichlin-Melnick brought attention to the new parole program under the Biden Administration and its almost identical features to the Cuban family reunification program under the Trump administration.

Committee Democrats focused heavily on Mr. Wolf’s involvement in the previous Administration’s policy of separating children from their parents at the border and the harm caused by that policy, while Republicans focused on current human trafficking and abuse concerns.

The complexities of the immigration system brought various controversies of child and family well-being into the hearing room. Multiple forms of child and family trauma can result from immigration policy and leadership decisions. Legislative proposals must prioritize preventing and alleviating child and family trauma from the immigration system.

By Ellison Olson, Policy Intern