How You Can Help #KeepFamiliesTogether (+Resilience Music)
Updated: Jan 2, 2019
Written by Ida V. Eskamani
There are children in cages on American soil. The Trump administration’s new and unprecedented policy of systematically removing children, including infants and toddlers, from their parents is hideous, heinous, and the purest form evil. Just when you think this administration cannot be any more despicable, they manage to find another vulnerable community to viciously target. While the United States government victimizes children, the immigrant incarceration industrial complex profits.
A new report by the ACLU shows that children and youth are being subjected to violent abuse and neglect at the hands of Border Patrol. The horrifying treatment of children seeking refuge should not be a surprise when Trump calls immigrants “animals" and "rapists." But while Trump makes up scary stories about “violent immigrants,” his own agents are the ones committing unthinkable violence against defenseless children.
Many of these parents are fleeing extreme violence, desperately seeking safety for their children. This search for protection is not a crime, it is what every single loving parent would do. This policy is a manifestation of the Trump administration's racist values, and will cause irreversible harm to thousands of innocent children. The safety and well-being of children and the soul of our nation is at stake.
On June 20th President Trump signed an executive order to “end” his controversial policy that has resulted in thousands of family separations and brought criticism from Democrats and Republicans. Trump's decision to reverse course comes despite the fact that administration officials have insisted for days that only Congress could fix the problem. It is not clear how or when the approximately 2,500 children already separated from their parents will be reunited; or in what condition these families will be detained. The House is expected to vote Thursday on the pair of immigration proposals. The first will be a hard-line option written by Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., to cut back on both legal and illegal immigration. The second option is a compromise between conservatives and Republican moderates. The Trump administration took more than two thousand kids hostage, and now Congress is negotiating the ransom. Read more here.
Keep the pressure on, and #KeepFamiliesTogether (and out of cages).
How You Can Help #KeepFamiliesTogether
In the upcoming weeks, Congress will be considering increasing funding for ICE and Border Patrol - the very agencies responsible for separating thousands of families. They are Trump’s deportation force, and we must stop these out of control agencies from using taxpayer money to tear families apart. Contact your members of Congress and demand they defund ICE and Border Patrol.
DONATE: These children and youth need, above all, legal representation. We need to be supporting a legal defense fund with trusted institutions that represent these children in court and help them to apply for forms or relief that give them a pathway to citizenship. You can Donate to the Americans for Immigrant Justice Children's Legal Aid Fund here, or their Family Defense Fund here.
RALLY: Click here to find a #KeepFamiliesTogether demonstration near you, or learn how to organize a rally in your own town (hey Orlando, here's your event).
CALL CONGRESS: We must ensure the rights of children and parents are respected, and our legal system is allowed to work in the way Congress intended--to ensure those needing protection are able to find permanent safety and that our families and communities are strong and successful.
Call Congress at 1-877-291-2172 or click here to find your representative to deliver letters to their offices.
Ask your member of congress to cosponsor the following legislation:
S. 3036 - Keep Families Together Act
H.R. 2572 - Protect Family Values at the Border Act
H.R. 5950/S.2937 – the HELP Separated Children Act
H.R. 2043/S. 2468 - Fair Day in Court for Kids Act of 2018
We demand that members of Congress vote against:
Border Security and Immigration Reform Act of 2018
Securing America’s Future Act
Resilience Music Mixtape
Music cultivates resilience. Through centuries of oppression, music has provided hope and a means of resistance to those most marginalized. We've compiled a Resilience Music mixtape, it hopes that it brings you strength during these dark times. You can find the playlist on Spotify here, and are invited to add your own songs too.
Not My President, by CNG
Somos Chulas (No Somos Pendejas), by Downtown Boys
Bad Year, by Spook School
Freedom is Free, by Chicano Batman
MariKKKopa, by Desaparecidos
Hijabi (Wrap my Hijab), by Mona Haydar
Prayer of the Refugee, by Rise Against
Now, by Miguel
Pa'lante, by Hurray for the Riff Raff
Special thank you to the Florida Immigrant Coalition and National Domestic Workers Alliance for compiling these critical resources.
Ida is an Iranian-American from Florida who grew up with the Beatles, and came of age in the pit. She will talk to you about music for as long as you will pretend to listen. She is founder of Bandifesto, a little blog with a big heart.