“All people deserve the right to raise their children in a healthy and safe environment without being targeted by aggressive immigration tactics and being forced to live in constant fear.”
By Julia Conley, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 6-29-2018
More than 700 direct actions are planned in cities and towns across the country on Saturday, as Americans rally against President Donald Trump’s “zero tolerance” immigration policy, the forcible separation of families, and the imprisonment of children.
A list and map of events with start times and details is available at MoveOn.org.
“Donald Trump and his administration have cruelly separated thousands of children from their families. Now they’re jailing families—and they haven’t yet reunified the families already brutally torn apart,” wrote the Families Belong Together coalition. “But we won’t allow it to continue. On June 30, we’re rallying in Washington, D.C., and around the country to tell Donald Trump and his administration to permanently end the separation of kids from their parents. End family internment camps. End the ‘zero-humanity’ policy that created this crisis. And reunify the children with their parents.”
A main event in Washington, D.C. is expected to draw tens of thousands of marchers, two days after thousands of women marched to Capitol Hill and nearly 600—including Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.)—were arrested for demonstrating in the Hart Senate Office Building.
Organizers are asking attendees to wear white as a symbol of unity and solidarity.
Smaller protests are planned in all 50 states, as well as Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands and in front of the U.S. embassy in Lisbon, Portugal.
The Trump administration’s practice of separating families began last month after Attorney General Jeff Sessions implemented a “zero tolerance” policy under which all adults who cross the U.S.-Mexico border without passing through an official port of entry are prosecuted. Following Trump’s signing of an executive order Plannlast week—only after the policy sparked international outrage—Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents will no longer separate families.
More than 2,000 children remain in detention centers without their parents, and the Trump administration is planning to detain families together indefinitely while adults await immigration trials.
Dozens of social justice groups were mobilizing their ranks to participate in the Families Belong Together protests this week, including Planned Parenthood, Win Without War, and National Nurses United.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the American Medical Association (AMA) have both spoken out against the Trump administration’s practice of separating families, citing the grave psychological damage being done to both children and parents who have been forcibly separated—many after fleeing violence in their home countries.
The United Nations has also denounced the practice as well as the indefinite detention of families, which is a violation of international humanitarian law.
On Twitter, the Families Belong Together coalition applauded the tens of thousands of Americans planning to march on Saturday, and urged the public to continue fighting the Trump administration’s anti-immigration agenda in the weeks and months ahead.
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