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Refusing to reunite families goes against everything we stand for as a nation. While the separations may have stopped, the reunifications have stalled.

 

Despite the executive order, there continue to be rampant violations of basic rights and family values. Within detention centers, parents are forced to choose between asylum or reunification with their children, and some parents are being deported without their children. The tracking of these children has been so mismanaged that nonprofits were forced to do the obvious – set up a hotline to connect families.

 

Research shows that stressors such as parental separation and institutionalization have lifelong consequences. If the administration really wants to stop gangs like MS13, it should stop creating the traumatic experiences that make young people more vulnerable to gang recruitment. Furthermore, it would take seriously the asylum claims of parents who come here to protect their children from conscription into gangs.

 

I urge you to call Congress and tell them that keeping families together is a family value. Tell them that they must reunite children with their parents swiftly, not only because they have been ordered to do so by the court but because it is the right thing to do.

 

Zoë True, Seattle