The Zero-Tolerance Policy: How You Can Help
Anyone who’s taken a history class knows that America has a past of tearing families apart, but the Trump administration’s recent policy change that separates migrant parents from their children, is particularly heartbreaking and cruel.
By this point, you’ve probably seen the images circling the internet of families and children being forcefully separated at the U.S Border, and the heartrending sounds, sights and stories that capture the aftermath of children in the detention centers they’re being held in.
The real thought here is, how is this happening?
According to Politifact, in April, the Trump administration put into action a “zero tolerance” immigration directive. Before this change was put into place, those who attempted to cross the border illegally were processed, detained, and sent back to their home or released awaiting a court date. With this “zero tolerance,” however, comes the separation of children and their parents. According to Vox, since the change, almost 2,700 children have been separated from their parents at the U.S Mexican border—and this amount is only expected to increase in the upcoming months.
This isn’t just a legal or political issue, but an issue of humanity.
There are ways you can help these families.
Talk To Your Politicians
There is power in setting pressure on your representatives on these issues. Get in contact with your representatives in Congress, Republican and Democrat, to let them know your feelings on the situation at the U.S border. Make phone calls, send emails, send letters.
If you’re unsure in how to contact, there are variety of guides to help you. The ACLU has a script you can follow here—and they will even route you to the correct representative needed.
Many of these families will be facing financial struggles, and every little bit you can give to them counts. Some organizations you can donate to are:
RAICES: The Refugee and Immigrant Center for Educational and Legal Services: This Texas-based organization can help put up the bond money to help with legal services and get parents out of detention and reunited with their children. Donate here.
ASAP: The Asylum Seeker Advocacy Project: This organization helps to stop wrongful deportations and is currently looking for donations to provide legal aid, and you can donate here.
The Texas Civil Rights Project: This organization uses legal litigation to help separated families. Donate here.
Las Americas Immigrant Advocacy Center: An El-Paso based organization that helps to provide legal representation for migrants. Donate here.
ProBar Children's Project: A project started by the American Bar Association is currently supporting over 1,000 children that are in detention centers across Southern Texas. Donate here.
Baby2Baby Initiative: A charity organization that proved low income children with their necessities. They are collecting essentials to create bundles of highly needed items for immigrant children through their partnership with Kids in Need of Defense. You can purchase items that will be directly donated on their registry, here.
Let your voice and feelings be heard. There are organized vigils and rallies being held all across the country and you can find a list here. Refinery29 also curated a list of upcoming protests that you can find here.