Joseph M. Cacace was quoted in a Worcester Telegram & Gazette article on the filing of an amended federal lawsuit seeking compensation for migrant children forcibly separated from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border.
Howard M. Cooper and Mr. Cacace, along with other attorneys and organizations, filed the lawsuit on behalf of migrant children against various Trump Administration officials. The amended complaint, filed in response to a motion to dismiss filed by the Department of Justice, adds a new count and asserts additional allegations.
The suit seeks the establishment of a mental health fund to treat the thousands of children who were forcibly separated from their parents at the border. The suit additionally asserts that the government is liable under the Federal Tort Claims Act for causing permanent emotional and psychological harm to children separated from their parents.
"In our view, the defendants' conduct resulted in the unnecessary and unlawful forcible separation of thousands of migrant children from their families," Mr. Cacace told the publication.
The new claim added to the amended complaint alleges a violation of the Fourth Amendment’s protection against unlawful seizure.
Mr. Cacace told the publication that the government’s separation of families was an unlawful seizure because of its duration.
“It lasted far longer than it needed to,” he said, adding that the parents, even when released from criminal custody, were often not reunited with their children for weeks or longer.