Communities, Not Cages

By David Luna, Executive Director

This president’s latest move ends one horror and opens the door to another – the separation of children from their parents and caregivers is replaced by the indefinite detention of entire families in jail camp conditions. The dysfunctions that run deep in our U.S. immigration policies and practices have not been fixed by yesterday’s executive order, they have been redirected.

The staggering backlog of cases at the border, painful shortage of judges to hear immigration cases, lack of space to house families together, and limited funding to increase resources mean that whatever comes next in this quagmire will be anything but a solution.

And the fate of the more than 2,300 children already separated from their families remains unclear.

This is not who we are. And we need to do something about it.

Anti-immigrant attitudes run contrary to our values, our country’s ideals, and economic good sense. We need immigration policies that:

  • Prohibit both the separation of families and the incarceration of families

  • Respond humanely to asylum seekers

  • Provide a permanent solution that affords stability to DACA youths

  • Explicitly avoid unnecessarily restricting legal immigration

To achieve this, we must raise our voices in a chorus of not just opposition, but of hope and solutions for a better way forward. We must come together. Families must be heard.

EVA members, partners and allies all over the country are mobilizing to make a difference.

Yesterday, we sat down with Juanita Valdez-Cox, Executive Director of La Union del Pueblo Entero (LUPE), to learn more about what her organization is seeing and doing, and how we can help. Click here to listen to this latest episode of Radio EVA and please share what you hear. Deep, authentic conversations about these challenges are the first and perhaps most important steps in driving change.

Juanita has a Cesar Chavez quote in the footer of every email she sends:

“Once Social Change begins, it cannot be reversed. You cannot un-educate the person who has learned to read. You cannot humiliate the person who feels pride. You cannot oppress the person who is not afraid anymore.”

Let us be educated, proud, and unafraid. Right now, protests, marches, and events are being organized across the country for Saturday, June 30th to demand that our government stop treating these children and their parents like criminals – click here to find one near you, then say you’ll join millions of Americans in standing up for families.

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