Here you got immigrant families seeking refuge from oppression in their own country, now coming to the US, presenting themselves at customs, (not sneaking in), and they’re being prosecuted instead, separated from their children and held in private prisons.
WHAT. THE ACTUAL FUCK.
From May 6th to May 19th alone, 658 children were separated from their parents by the US border patrol and placed by themselves in detention centers around the country.
Traditionally, the US has treated refugee families as ‘seeking protection from oppression’ and would consider their entry into the US if certain standards were met. If not, they would be returned to their home counties. Now, with Trump’s new policies, these individuals are instead being prosecuted and their children are being taken away from them.
Check this excerpt from HRW.org
It’s important to remember that the families being pulled apart by the new “zero tolerance” push are not the only immigrants being treated this way. Immigrants who present themselves at a US border to claim asylum—something they have every right to do under US and international law—sometimes also have their children taken awayfrom them. That’s because the government holds far too many asylum seekers in immigration detention while their claims are being processed. So these parents, who are following the law and trying to do everything right, are nevertheless torn apart from their children, potentially for months on end.
In one heart-wrenching account, a mother, Mirian, talks about how she was forced to place her 18-month old son in a car and watch him be driven away, screaming and crying. This mother did everything correctly—she presented herself at the border, told officials she was asking for asylum, and answered their questions. But she and her son were still separated for over two months.
I can not. I jus can’t.
What you can do to help.
Get involved with RAICES. RAICES is a charity that’s providing pro bono legal assistance to refugees being prosecuted, as well as helping raise bond for asylum-seeking-immigrants with no criminal history. Located in Texas, they mainly operate at the immigrant prisons in San Antonio and Forth Worth. RAICES’ aim is to make sure “everyone goes through the system with a lawyer.” You can donate to RAICE to help give immigrant’s representation here. You can help bond detained immigrants here. RAICES also needs volunteers willing to accompany families to court and help be a guide to them throughout the process. You can volunteer here.