A migrant boy rejoins his mother.
And he’s totally changed.His name is Thiago Fernandes.
He is five years old.
He was separated from his mom, Ana Carolina Fernandes, at a southwest border point in the United States.
The separation lasted 50 days for this migrant boy.
Before that Thiago loved playing with the yellow, impish Minion characters from the Despicable Me movies.
But the separation has totally changed him.
His mom says he is not the same boy as he was before he was taken away by Border Patrol Agents when they arrived in the United States.
When they first got home after being reunited, the boy — whom she hadn’t nursed in years — pleaded to be breast-fed. When visitors showed up at the family’s new home in Philadelphia, he crouched behind the sofa.
“He’s been like that since I got him back,” Ms. Fernandes said. “He doesn’t want to talk to anyone.”
Thiago is one of almost 3,000 children that were forcibly forcibly removed from a parent at the border.
It was part of a Donald Trump new policy of zero tolerance for immigrants.
But that policy ended on July 20 after a backlash against it.
So more than 1,800 separated children have been reunited with their parents.
“Our volunteers are seeing the significant and real toll that these traumatic separations have had on these children’s and these families’ lives, which persist even after reunification,” said Joanna Franchini, who is coordinating a national network of volunteers working with migrant children and their parents called Together & Free.”
“These kids don’t want to be without their mothers; it triggers a feeling of abandonment, or that their mother will be taken away from them,” said Luana Biagini, a paralegal who has been working with reunited Brazilian families.
“I have mothers complaining that their child was more outgoing and talkative, and now they are quiet and unresponsive. Some take a while to process information or a situation, and Mom has to say, ‘Hey, hey wake up,’’’ said Ms. Biagini, who works at the Jeff Goldman law firm in Boston.