Families have no borders
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As the number of immigrant children taken away from their parents at the border has surged, we’ve seen one infuriating and heartbreaking news story after another about separated families. Today’s workout is all about using the power you have right now to fight back against this inhumane policy.
First up, educate yourself with a quick rundown from Indivisible about what’s going on at the border, and the ways very young children are being taken away from their parents.
Congress has the power to pass a law prohibiting family separation, and some members are working on it. Last week, 35 senators introduced the Keep Families Together Act, which states “An agency may not remove a child from a parent or legal guardian solely for the policy goal of deterring individuals from migrating to the United States or for the policy goal of promoting compliance with civil immigration laws.” Call your two senators and ask them to sign on as cosponsors. If they are already cosponsors, thank them and let them know this issue is a top priority for you.
Check Families Belong Together to find actions near you, then plan to attend one. Maybe you can attend a peaceful protest, or maybe you can create a “Lunchtime for Change” event at your workplace. (The website gives June 14 as the date for “Lunchtime for Change,” but June 15 and other dates will be just as effective.)
Second Wind
In the Washington Post, Amy B. Wang reported on a Congresswoman’s visit to asylum seekers at a Border Patrol detention facility:
[Rep. Pramila Jayapal] asked how many were mothers who had been forcibly separated from their children: More than half of the women raised their hands. Some said that their children had been as young as 12 months—and many no longer knew where their children were being held….“Some of them heard their children screaming for them in the next room. Not a single one of them had been allowed to say goodbye or explain to them what was happening.”
There is no automatic right to an attorney in immigration court—even for minor children. KIND (Kids In Need of Defense) trains lawyers to represent children who are going before an immigration judge. Lawyers can learn more and volunteer at this link.
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