The forceful separation of children from their parents by U.S. immigration officials at our border is cruel and inhumane. InterAction is appalled by this policy and the reports that the U.S. government has constructed internment cages to house these children, some of whom are fleeing horrors and oppression to seek asylum in the United States. The InterAction community has long stood for and supported communities around the world as they sought shelter and safety. We have also fought against policies that have dehumanized and subjugated asylum seekers in all countries and cannot stand silent as these issues cross our border.
The United States has an obligation to our values and to basic humanity to ensure that children are protected and not forcibly separated from their parents as a matter of U.S. policy. The administration’s current actions violate the U.S. Refugee Act of 1980, are against the values of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, and must stop. The choices we make today and the trauma we cause will have ramifications not only on the children and families we have chosen to rip apart but on American global leadership for years to come.
President Kennedy once said that “We can say with some assurance that, although children may be the victims of fate, they will not be the victims of our neglect.” The United States is not without error, we have had times in our history when we created policies and laws out of fear. Those moments have left a stain on our nation. We should seek not to repeat them by neglecting and harming children.
InterAction stands for affirming human dignity, on behalf of refugees, and in opposition to the current cruel treatment of migrant children and their families. We condemn these acts and call on elected officials at all levels of power to urge the administration to end the horrific practice of forcibly separating children from their families and return all children to their parents as quickly as possible.