WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Raúl M. Grijalva (D-AZ) joined his colleagues in the Congressional Hispanic Caucus this week in sending a letter to Department of Homeland Security Secretary John F. Kelly, imploring he reject any policy that separates children from their parents at the U.S. – Mexico border. The letter comes in response to Sec. Kelly’s comments on Tuesday that his agency was considering family separation as a means to deter Central American families from crossing the border.
The letter reads, in part:
“It is appalling that DHS would try to use family separation as a deterrent aimed at families fleeing violence. Our country has a longstanding history of welcoming refugees and immigrants.
“This proposed policy would tarnish this history by taking a punitive approach towards vulnerable women and children.”
Rep. Grijalva released the following statement:
“Intentionally tearing scared children from their parents is revolting, and I am deeply disturbed that Sec. Kelly and DHS would even consider such an inhumane policy,”Rep Grijalva said. “The family unit is as old as human civilization, and must be protected at all times. If enacted, this policy would undermine our history as a nation where the world’s most vulnerable could seek a better life for themselves and their families. Instead, we would be inflicting more trauma than any child, nonetheless person, should ever have to experience in their lifetime. Families fleeing violence and oppression have already experienced enough emotional and physical stress by the time they have reached the border. Our government should not be the source of any additional suffering.”
The full text of Rep. Grijalva’s letter with the Congressional Hispanic Caucus is available here.