Both sides agreed to submit a document Monday night stating their disagreements on protocol; Court will reconvene on Tuesday to determine the process for reuniting the remaining children.
"There's no question that the parties are meeting and conferring", she said. "I'm optimistic that many of these families will be reunited tomorrow, and that we'll have a very clear understanding as to who has not been reunited, why not, and what timeframe will be in place".
The American Civil Liberties Union received the list of the names of the almost 100 children under the age of 5 who were separated from their parents at the border, according to a group spokesman. This comes as the Trump administration appears set to fail in plans to reunite even half of children under 5 with their families before Tuesday's court-ordered deadline.
But The New York Times reported late last week that, under pressure to reunite the families, authorities were struggling to connect them after records linking children to their parents disappeared and in some cases were destroyed, although not as part of a deliberate attempt to obfuscate.
As the government awaits the court's Monday decision on whether or not the timeline for family reunification will be extended, time is of the essence: doctors have repeatedly warned that being separated from parents for even short periods of time can cause symptoms of toxic stress in children, which can derail healthy emotional development.
Officials said they were still working to locate the parents of numerous children, some of whom have been deported. The administration cited difficulties locating dozens of the youngest children's parents, including at least 19 who had already undergone deportation proceedings. They will need more time to collect DNA samples or other evidence from parents who have been released from government custody.
Nine have parents who were removed already from the US. If the parent is actually in criminal custody now, reunification can not occur.
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One there is no information on the parent.
The ACLU, however, said it believes as many as 10 more children might not be on the government's list, and said it would provide those names to the government to investigate.
Additionally, Gelernt took issue with the Trump administration's claim that it has lost track both of parents who have been released by ICE within the USA pending their immigration or asylum hearings and at least nine parents who it deported without their children. The families will be released after they are reunited. Fabian did not offer a timetable for when the other children would join their parents.
The hearing followed a feverish weekend of talks between the administration and the ACLU after the judge refused on Friday to grant a blanket extension to the deadline, saying instead that he would only consider certain exceptions. That process requires lengthy background checks for potential sponsors, including parents.
"I think the other point is, we just don't know how much effort the government has made to find released parents", Gelernt said.
At the hearing in San Diego, Judge Dana Sabraw gave the authorities extra time to determine which children will be back with their parents, as government lawyer Sarah Fabian said 54 of the youngsters could be returned to their parents by the Tuesday deadline, the USA media reports said. Two children have already been reunited with their parents, lawyers said.