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Today democracy and decency are broken in the United States of America.
Thousands of infants and children have been seized from their parents and incarcerated near the U.S.-Mexico border in accordance with the Trump administration’s zero-tolerance immigration policy.
In response to the national outrage, Trump signed an executive order to end the separation of families — but in turn, he’s asking Republicans in Congress for legislation to keep migrant families incarcerated indefinitely.
Trump’s order also fails to require the Department of Homeland Security to reunite the children seized by the agency with their families, a stunning dereliction of responsibility. In some cases, DHS has already deported the parents while their children remain in U.S. custody.
Children are in cages. Infants have been snatched from breastfeeding mothers. Many may never see their parents again.
And studies have shown that separating children from their parents can result in permanent brain damage. The younger the child, the more profound the damage.
We’re witnessing a modern-day atrocity on U.S. soil, orchestrated by the U.S. government.
Like so many of you, we at Free Press are watching and are angered and horrified.
The administration has engaged in a campaign of misinformation, using broadcasters like Fox News and Sinclair to justify the policy on the grounds of criminality. In reality, we know that seeking asylum within U.S. borders is not illegal.
And contrary to the administration’s favorite myth, studies have repeatedly shown that undocumented immigration does not increase criminal activity.
The bottom line: Zero tolerance is a policy of dehumanization designed to keep immigrants and refugees of color from seeking safety within U.S. borders.
From referring to Latinx people as “rapists” and “animals” to enacting Muslim travel bans to pushing to construct a border wall to slashing the numbers of immigrants and refugees permitted to enter the country, this administration has been consistently abhorrent.
Our hearts are broken for these children, their families and the primarily Central American communities that hold them dear. We’re experiencing a dark and immoral chapter in history.
There can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul
than the way in which it treats its children.
— Nelson Mandela
Take action: Join activists across the country on June 30 to stop the Trump administration’s attacks on migrants. Register now at FamiliesBelongTogether.org to march in a city near you.
In the meantime, check out this list of groups working with immigrants that need volunteers and financial support to help affected families and resist the government’s agenda:
Lend your support to the Family Reunification and Bond Fund created by RAICES (the Refugee & Immigrant Center for Education & Legal Services). RAICES will use the funds to help jailed migrants post bond and to help locate and reunite the more than 2,300 seized children with their families.
Sign the pledge to join Latinx-led advocacy group Mijente in its work to protect the rights and dignity of immigrants.
Help support Juntos, a community-led Latinx immigrant organization in South Philadelphia that’s fighting to shut down the local ICE detention center and end deportations.
Check out these helpful roundups of other organizations to support:
Check out Refinery29’s list of advocacy organizations and actions
If you’re unable to attend a protest, consider engaging in other types of activism suggested by the New York Times.
We at Free Press ask our supporters and allies to join us in calling on the Trump administration to immediately end the human-rights abuses taking place at the border, return all children to their families, and abolish immigrant detention. It’s the right and humane thing to do.
In the absence of moral national leadership, we must unite and resist.