TO DO NOW: Seven steps** you can take today and this week: ** These actions are reproduced here in part, from a list prepared by PoliticalCharge.org. See Additional Resources below for more information.
1. Contact your U.S. Senators and Representatives. Their job is to conduct oversight of DHS (Department of Homeland Security) they must hold DHS accountable. Find your Senators here. Find your Representative here. Sample Script: “I am outraged by how our government is treating children at the border. What is my Senator/Rep doing about this?”
2. The ACLU is gathering signatures to petition Kevin K. McAleenan, Commissioner of United States Customs and Border Protection, to stop the government from abusing immigrant children. You can find the petition here.
3. You can contact ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) directly. Write to them here or call them at 1-866-DHS-2-ICE. Sample Script: “ I am outraged at the policy being carried out which separates vulnerable children from their parents and siblings. The reported abuse and terror it represents is reprehensible. This is inhumane and illegal and must be stopped immediately.”
4. The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights has recommended guidelines for human rights at international borders which you can read here. The reported actions our DHS is taking do not comply with these guidelines. You can contact the UN Office for Human Rights here. Sample Script: As a U.S. citizen I am appalled by the policy and practices of my government in the matter of Border security separation and abuse of minor children. What actions can I take to enforce or promote the decency expected by the UN?”
5. Amnesty International has been calling for an end to the U.S. policy of separating children at the border. Their call to action can be found at the end of this post here.
6. Americans of Conscience has a list of 7 other U.S. officials who need to hear from us, plus a script to use. That list is here.
7. DEVELOPING: There is a nascent effort to organize #WhereAreTheChildren Marches for June 14. Check here for more information.
CALL TO ACTION:
“It is every parent’s nightmare to have a child snatched away. To adopt this as standard procedure to facilitate deportations is inhumane and does nothing to make Americans safer. This country and Secretary Nieljsen, must reject family separation.” —— Dora Galacatos, Alan Shapiro, and Brett Stark as quoted from The NY Times.
“Criminalizing and stigmatizing parents who are only trying to keep their children from harm and give them a safe upbringing will cause untold damage to thousands of traumatized families who have already given up everything to flee terrible circumstances in their home countries,” —— Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas Director at Amnesty International.
“Prying infant children from their parents’ arms as they seek asylum is a flagrant violation of their human rights. Doing so in order to push asylum seekers back into dangerous situations where they may face persecution is also a violation of U.S. obligations under refugee law.” —— Amnesty International
Over the past few months and intensifying in the past week, Americans have learned of increasingly more harmful practices being carried out by CBP. (U.S. Customs and Border Protections officials). These CBP abuses are not only unconscionably inhumane, but they also violate United States law and international human rights law. If the president refuses to bring this to an end, which he has full authority to do, then we must pressure him and his cohorts until justice is served. No distractions. No excuses.
BACKGROUND: Immigration policy and implementation are complicated. However, the Congress has the power to make laws restricting entrance to the country. And the Executive Branch has the power to implement them via the Justice department as well as ICE. The President also has the power to remove people from the country as He/she sees fit. Currently under the Zero Tolerance policy enacted by this president and the US Attorney General, Jeff Sessions, Trump has absolutely overstepped, overreached his authority. The Zero Tolerance is a cruel destructive program. It is victimizing the most vulnerable children and the parents and families who love them. Human Rights organizations all over the globe are condemning Trump and his vile practices. We must take action now, today and help bring this to an end.
Website. Children’s Rights: Protecting Kids, Providing Hope http://www.childrensrights.org/outcry-over-policy-separating-immigrant-children-from-families-at-the-u-s-border/
Website. Where Are The Children and What to Do to Help Them. https://politicalcharge.org/2018/05/26/wherearethechildren-how-to-help/
Website. Actions to take to protect children and asylum seekers
Forbes, November 21, 2014. “The President Has As Much Immigration Authority as the Congress Gives Him”. https://www.forbes.com/sites/danielfisher/2014/11/21/the-president-has-as-much-immigration-authority-as-congress-gives-him/#40cc78833251
Baltimore Sun, June 3, 2018. “This is No way to Treat Children. Period” http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/opinion/editorial/bs-ed-0530-border-children-20180529-story.html
Slate, June 4, 2018 “U.S. Senator Turned away From Center for Migrant Children” https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2018/06/sen-jeff-merkley-turned-away-from-border-facility-for-children.html
NYTimes Opinion piece, February 28, 2018. “The Cruel Ploy of Taking Immigrant Kids From Their Parents” https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/28/opinion/immigrant-children-deportation-parents.html
NYTimes June 5, 2018. “Taking Children from Parents is Illegal, UN Tells U.S. https://www.nytimes.com/2018/06/05/world/americas/us-un-migrant-children-families.html
Children’s Rights Defined: “General rights include the right to security of the person, to freedom from inhuman, cruel, or degrading treatment, and the right to special protection during childhood. Particular human rights of children include, among other rights, the right to life, the right to a name, the right to express oneself in matters concerning the child, the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion, the right to health care, the right to protection from economic and sexual exploitation, and the right to education.
This CTA idea Came to Carroll CAN via the concern and request of member activists.