The Ackerman community is deeply concerned about the treatment of children and families who are being kept in poor conditions while seeking safe entry into the United States. These conditions add to the trauma that families have already endured. Children continue to be forcibly separated from their parents, which threatens the safety and mental health of all involved. We strongly disagree with this administration’s policy of separating children from their families as they cross into the United States.
We also hope that immigrant children will receive more thorough assessments at the earliest possible time. Regardless of the circumstances under which children enter this country, they are fleeing violence and poverty. The most humane thing to do is to ensure adequate medical and mental health care for the children in these facilities.
We are saddened by the tragic deaths of 7-year-old Jakelin Caal Maquin and 8-year old Felipe Alonzo Gomez, who died while in the custody of U.S. Customs and Border Protection. This loss of life is a cruel act of negligence that cannot continue. Our hearts go out to their families during this difficult time.