Things That Matter

The White House Is Rumored To Restart Family Separations. Here’s What We Know

The Washington Post reported that the White House is “actively” considering plans to begin separating parents from their children at the U.S.-Mexico border once again as a ‘deterrent’ method.

There’s no question that this is completely unacceptable and painful news to hear, but it’s important to understand the facts.

The New UN human rights chief announced that Trump’s family separation policy was “unconscionable”.

@RCPress_Sean / Twitter

Caption: “A mural by Michelle Angela Ortiz detailing family separation at the border and at the Berks County Immigration Detention Center is rankling @senatorscarnati and other GOP leadership, claiming that it’s too political for this election season.”

President Trump is defending his decision to use family separation as a deterrent.

@realDonaldTrump / Twitter

Trump’s entire platform has been built upon the belief that immigrants from Mexico are “murderers and rapists.” He has defended family separation as a means to deter migrants when he told reporters at the White House, “If they feel there will be separation, they don’t come. You’ve got some really bad people out there.”

More than 2,500 children were taken from their parents in less than six weeks.

@NotDexVonFrisch / Twitter

Trump’s goal with a “zero tolerance” immigration policy has been to end what he calls “catch and release,” or what most reasonable people would call common sense.

“Catch and release” allows migrant families to wait for a hearing outside of government run facilities. It allows them to work, create a home, and maybe not traumatize their kids.

Hundreds of still separated children are expected to be adopted by new families.

Many organizations, including the ACLU, are fighting to make sure the administration follows the court’s ruling to reunite the families they tore apart once and for all.

Now, the administration is “revamping” the family separation policy.

@RepGutierrez / Twitter

Meaning that while the administration was not even prepared to reunite families by keeping track of family ties, they’re tinkering with a plan that is internationally regarded by the UN as torture.

Former Attorney General Jeff Sessions implemented the policy and supported it till he left the administration.

@CNNPolitics / Twitter

Session has said that the harsh policy is a result of an immigration crisis.

Reports and numbers show that the United States is experiencing record low numbers of border crossings.

U.S. corporations are profiting off detaining migrant families and building new facilities to house them.

@ianbremmer / Twitter

We all know the private prison industry is corrupt. They lobby Republican politicians to get stricter and stricter mandatory sentences on crimes, most often committed by people of color and low-income communities.

Let us tell you how Trump is trying to rebrand this reality:

@IrmaHurst15 / Twitter

Caption: “Trump Official Says Detention Centers For Immigrant Children Is ‘More Like A Summer Camp’”

Stephen Miller, the senior advisor to the president, has pushed for a harder immigration process.

@MrRaceBannon / Twitter

The Washington Post reports that some senior officials are “concerned about the optics…of renewed separations, Miller and others are determined to act.” Miller’s uncle wrote an op-ed detailing how Miller’s family benefited from immigration laws to come to the U.S.

In reality, the numbers show that family separation didn’t deter crossings.

Jahi Chikwendiu / The Washington Post

You’ll remember that reporters interviewing migrants revealing that they don’t follow Trump on Twitter and were unaware of these policies. They were blindsided at the border when their children we taken from them.

Arizona Republican Sen. John Kyl is supporting harsher enforcements.

@MegKinnardAP / Twitter

Sen. Kyl was appointed to the position when Sen. John McCain died. Since taking the Senate seat, he has broken away from McCain’s beliefs and has pushed for the administration to pass harsher and harsher immigration laws and punishments.

Policy Option No. 1: Expand ICE’s jurisdiction to detain children.

@RepGutierrez / Twitter

As in, at these high-level meetings at the White House, officials have proposed new rules that would permit them to withdraw from a 1997 federal court ruling that bans Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) from detaining children for longer than 20 days.

Option No. 2: “Binary Choice”

@OregoniansUnite / Twitter

The Washington Post reports that Trump is most seriously considering detaining asylum-seeking families together for up to 20 days and then giving the parents a choice: stay in family detention as a family for as long as years until their case has closed, or allow the government to take their children to a government shelter or so other relatives can seek custody.

All this news on the heels asylum seekers starting to reach the southern border after walking from Honduras.

@ajplus / Twitter

The New York Times reported that mothers were walking up to 20 miles a day with children as young as three months old.

Pictures of viejos walking on crutches, trans women arm in arm carrying a rainbow pride flag and mothers with children on their shoulders have flooded social media.

Now that the midterm elections are over and Democrats control the House of Representatives, Trump has stayed relatively quiet about the asylum seekers.

@CNN_Oppmann / Twitter

Caption: “Mexicans place clothes and shoes out for caravan migrants in Huehuetan. There is still kindness and generosity in the world.”

He spent weeks calling the asylum seekers invaders as he campaign for Republican Congresspeople nationwide.

@thehill / Twitter

He is seized on these images of refugees as a ploy to get Republicans to the polls and even called them a “blessing in disguise”. They are refugees, but Trump has convinced his base that they are dangerous “rapists” and “bad hombres.”

They are people who are legally allowed to come to this country and seek asylum.

@jorgeramosnews / Twitter

Trump also attempted to scare his base into thinking that terrorists had invaded the group of refugees seeking asylum.

To date, ICE has three “family residential centers,” which can detain up to about 3,000 people.

@NotDexVonFrisch / Twitter

So, asylum seekers aside, when Trump deploys a new policy that would once again start family separation, forced or not, corporations benefit.

Activists are fighting harder than ever for the rights fo those peacefully seeking asylum.

@MarshallProj / Twitter

Until every bed is empty. Until there is a new immigration system in place.

Look out for protests near you.

@knifecoyote / Twitter

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez campaigned and won on the promise of abolishing ICE. Now is time to see if the progressive values that elected so many members to Congress at the midterms can pass.

READ: Cafe Tacvba Greets Refugee Caravan In Mexico City With Support And Music

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Five Migrant Girls Were Found Left Alone And Abandoned In The Texas Heat

Things That Matter

Five Migrant Girls Were Found Left Alone And Abandoned In The Texas Heat

This past March, according to El Pais, migrants crossed the Rio Grande at an all-time high not seen in the past 15 years. US government reports underlined that a total of 171,000 people arrived at the southern border of the United States in March. Eleven percent were minors who made the journey by themselves.

Reports say that this vulnerable group will continue to grow in size with recent shifts in the Biden administration child immigration policies. Five migrants girls recently found by the river recently became part of this group.

An onion farmer in Quemado recently reported that he found five migrant girls on his land.

The girls were each under the age of seven, the youngest was too small to even walk. Three of the girls are thought to be from Honduras, the other two are believed to have come from Guatemala.​ Jimmy Hobbs, the farmer who found the girls, said that he called the Border Patrol gave the children aid by giving them water and food and putting them in the shade.

“I don’t think they would have made it if I hadn’t found them,” Hobbs told US Rep. Tony Gonzalez (R-Texas) in a New York Post. “Because it got up to 103 yesterday.”

“My thoughts are that it needs to stop right now. There are going to be thousands. This is just five miles of the Rio Grande,” Hobbs’ wife added in their conversation with Gonzalez. “That’s a huge border. This is happening all up and down it. It can’t go on. It’s gonna be too hot. There’ll be a lot of deaths, a lot of suffering.” 

“It is heartbreaking to find such small children fending for themselves in the middle of nowhere,” Chief Border Patrol Agent Austin Skero II explained of the situation in an interview with ABC 7 Eyewitness News. “Unfortunately this happens far too often now. If not for our community and law enforcement partners, these little girls could have faced the more than 100-degree temperatures with no help.”

According to reports, the Customs and Border Protection stated that the five girls​ ​will be processed and placed in the custody of the Department of Health and Human Services.​

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A Group of Volunteer ‘Fairy Godmothers’ Threw a Lavish Quinceañera For This Homeless Teen Girl

Things That Matter

A Group of Volunteer ‘Fairy Godmothers’ Threw a Lavish Quinceañera For This Homeless Teen Girl

Photo via Getty Images

For most Latinas, having a quinceañera is a right-of-passage. Your quinceañera is the official milestone that proves you’re finally a woman. It’s a party that you look forward to your entire childhood. It’s that one time in your life that you, and only you, get to feel like a princess.

Unfortunately, not every girl has the luxury of having a quinceañera. Some girls’ families don’t have the finances to throw a huge party.

In Miami, a group of “fairy godmothers” organized a quinceañera for a homeless teen girl whose family recently emigrated from Mexico.

The girl, Adriana Palma, had moved with her family from Mexico to Miami in early 2020. But because of the pandemic, her father lost his job. Adriana, her parents, and her three younger brothers spent the next four months living in their SUV.

Relocating to another country is hard enough, but Adriana faced another challenge by being homeless, struggling to learn English, and chasing down random Wi-Fi signals in order to complete her homework assignments. It was a struggle, to say the least.

And to make matters worse, Adriana’s fifteenth birthday was coming up. Adrian’s parents told her that, since they were homeless, they wouldn’t be able to throw her a quinceañera. “We will be together as a family,” her mother, Itzel Palma, told her. “That will be my gift to you.”

Luckily, the Palma family had a group of guardian angels watching out for them. Being homeless wouldn’t prevent Adriana from having a quinceañera.

A charity called Miami Rescue Mission had already hooked up the Palmas with a small apartment for the family to get back on their feet. “Cover Girls”, a subgroup of the Miami Rescue Mission, dedicate their time to help women and children who are in tough circumstances.

When Lian Navarro, leader of the Cover Girls, found out about Adriana’s situation, she knew she had to help. Cuban-Amercian herself, Navarro knew how important quinceañeras are to young Latinas. She called up her group of volunteers and they got to work making Adriana’s dream come true.

The 60 “fairy godmothers” decided to throw Adriana the quinceañera of her dreams in a local Miami church. They settled on a theme: Paris.

The volunteers decorated the bare church in gold Eiffel towers, supplied pink macarons and French pastries, they topped off each table with a floral centerpiece. They gifted Adriana with every item on her wish list. Not to mention, Adriana was able to be dressed up in a frilly pink quinceañera dress. Her hair and makeup were professionally done. A professional photographer captured her special day.

“We want them to have these memories,” said Cover Girl volunteer, Tadia Silva, about children and teens who grow up homeless. “They have to believe they are worth all that because they are.”

After her beautiful quinceañera, Adriana appeared to know her true worth. At the end of the party, she gave her “fairy godmothers” personalized notes of thanks. “I felt like a princess,” she said.

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