So Trump's order is likely to create a fresh set of problems and may well spark a new court fight.
"You look at what's happening in Europe, you look at what's happening in other places".
Since Attorney-General Jeff Sessions announced the policy, almost 2,000 children have been taken away from their parents. It's more than a political issue. The Alabama-based Southern Poverty Law Center said the order didn't go almost far enough. "There are workable alternatives", president Richard Cohen said in a statement.
These caregivers also share concerns about children's nightmares, insomnia or acting out in school, all of which can be signs of anxiety or depression.
"This is a tragedy that children are being separated from their parents", he said.
Trump's family apparently played a role in his turnaround. She said the government had high standards for detention centres and the children were well cared for, stressing that Congress needs to plug loopholes in the law so families can stay together.
Homeland Security Secretary Nielsen briefed lawmakers on Capitol Hill Wednesday, and those on the fence over pending immigration legislation headed to the White House to meet with Trump.More news: Senegal punishes Poland errors for 2-1 victory in World Cup
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While journalists have been able to visit the facilities holding children in tightly controlled tours, they have so far not been allowed to speak to the children inside.
Anastasia Tonello, president of the American Immigration Lawyers Association said the detention of families - parents and children - who pose no flight risk or danger to the community is simply "unacceptable, abrogates worldwide responsibilities to refugees, and goes against our country's most fundamental values".
Gelernt represents a Brazilian asylum seeker in a closely watched lawsuit that seeks a nationwide halt to family separation. She was heckled at a restaurant Tuesday evening and has faced protesters at her home.
NBC News reported Thursday that the government had dropped charges against 17 migrants, each of them parents.
Scientific evidence supporting childhood resilience and family preservation is robust enough to have informed US policy on areas ranging from worldwide development to domestic child protection. "Republicans want security. But I am working on something - it never ends!"
The Justice Department quickly said, however, that the Trump administration's zero-tolerance policy was still in effect and that it would continue seeking the prosecution of all adult migrants who cross the border illegally, including parents.
Many questions about family separation at the border have been left unanswered.
The order requires families to be held together - meaning they will need to be kept in detention space that is designed for families.
One migrant mother who arrived in the U.S. with her husband and daughter was tricked into boarding a bus without her child. The children are put into the custody of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services with the aim of keeping them as close to their parents as possible and reuniting the family after the case goes through the courts, said Wagner. "The thousands of children who have spent days, weeks, and months without the love and support of their parents deserve nothing less", Crowley added.