Open Letter to the Parents of Children Crossing Our Southwest Border [June 23, 2014] [open pdf - 156KB]
On June 23, 2014, the Department of Homeland Security issued the following press release: "This year, a record number of children will cross our Southern border illegally into the United States. In the month of May alone, the number of children, unaccompanied by a mother or father, who crossed our southern border reached more than 9,000, bringing the total so far this year to 47,000. The majority of these children come from Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, where gang and drug violence terrorize communities. To the parents of these children I have one simple message: Sending your child to travel illegally into the United States is not the solution. It is dangerous to send a child on the long journey from Central America to the United States. The criminal smuggling networks that you pay to deliver your child to the United States have no regard for his or her safety and well-being -- to them, your child is a commodity to be exchanged for a payment. In the hands of smugglers, many children are traumatized and psychologically abused by their journey, or worse, beaten, starved, sexually assaulted or sold into the sex trade; they are exposed to psychological abuse at the hands of criminals. Conditions for an attempt to cross our southern border illegally will become much worse as it gets hotter in July and August."
U.S. Department of Homeland Security: http://www.dhs.gov/