Child Protections on the Table in Immigration Debate
With the shutdown behind us, Congress is now actively working on an immigration deal, and LIRS is watching carefully as talks turn to the rollback of vital protections for children seeking asylum in the United States.
We are hopeful that members from both sides of the aisle will find a way to work together. However, LIRS is unwilling to stand by as the future of vulnerable children is leveraged or compromised.
Children who flee to our borders deserve our compassion and protection. Data shows that violence is the single greatest cause for unaccompanied children crossing the U.S. border. These children are coming to the U.S. because their lives are at risk. Rolling back protections for these children is not only immoral, but it is also a highly ineffective way to address the issues at hand.
This is about common sense, but, above all, it is about our humanity.
We are asking each of you to take a few minutes to push calls to Congress, urging them to consider ALL children in their negotiations.
You can easily call your Senators and Representative by calling the U.S. Capitol switchboard at 202-224-3121. A switchboard operator will connect you directly with the Senate or House office you request. If you do not know the name of your Senators and/or Representative, you can find that out here.
You can use this as a sample message to give during your call:
““Hello, I’m [your name] from [your city, state], and I’m calling to urge [your Senator/Representative] lift up the voices of vulnerable children fleeing horrific violence in Central America. As a person of faith, I am very concerned about any attempts to roll back protections and legal rights for these youth. That is against my beliefs and those of my community.
As we provide a needed solution for Dreamers, I urge you to also stand behind the vulnerable children who came to this country seeking safety and security from very violent and often life-threatening situations. And I ask that [your Senator/Representative] let Majority Leader McConnell/Speaker Ryan know that he or she does not leave thousands of families and youth without any sort of protection or means to create a better life for themselves and their families.
Let us continue to welcome the stranger and promote American values of freedom and justice by ensuring protections for all vulnerable youth are kept in place.”
And, of course, feel free to add in your own words as you advocate!
Thank you for standing with us in this vital time,
LIRS Director of Advocacy