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A Test for all Americans: Unaccompanied Children Deserve a Compassionate Response September 3rd, 2014
“Maria would rather die than return to El Salvador,” notes the child psychiatrist who evaluated the 13-year-old near the U.S./ Mexican border. The girl is suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder and major depression after escaping rape by a gang member, as well as threats to her grandparents’ lives back in El Salvador. With her in mind, and others like her, it is unthinkable that U.,S. policy proposals would roll back protections afforded to unaccompanied children under the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008. It would give border patrol agents the power to immediately render deportation decisions, and if this happens, children like Maria won’t have the opportunity to even talk to doctors. Read “Vulnerable and Alone: Children Crossing the Border” (PHR), here. The U.S. Bishops are calling for a humanitarian response. Watch this You Tube.
Learn more and spread the word: Watch the three-minute video, Why People are Fleeing Central America, from Jesuit Refugee Service/USA, that succinctly explains the root causes of the migration spike. The children are predominantly coming from Honduras (with the #1 homicide rate in the world), El Salvador (#3) and Guatemala (#8), known collectively as the Northern Triangle. Reportedly, street gangs from the 90’s now work closely with the drug lords and increasingly use “join or die” tactics with these children. Watch the video.
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WOLA Researchers Question Border Security Rhetoric February 20th, 2013
In a talk sponsored by the University of Chicago Human Rights Program, Adam Isacson and Maureen Meyer of the Washington Office on Latin America, a non-governmental organization which the Oblates support, said the voices in Washington calling for further buildup of border security mechanisms as part of comprehensive immigration reform are wrong. Their year-long study has shown them that what those voices call a “crisis” on the border, a “war-zone” with violent criminals, “illegal aliens” and terrorists streaming over the border into the U.S. does not exist on the U.S. side. The people in actual and terrifying danger are undocumented migrants passing through Mexico and crossing the border.
Spring/Summer Issue of JPIC Report now available! April 26th, 2012
The Spring/Summer Issue of our bi-annual print newsletter is now available on-line. (Download the PDF…)
This issue includes articles on Global HIV/AIDS funding, a new organic farm at Oblate headquarters in Washington, the human reality at the US/Mexican border, shareholder advocacy in the financial sector, human trafficking and environmental issues: from biodiversity loss and climate change to OMI JPIC work in solidarity with Bangladeshi colleagues and new solar panels on an Oblate church in California.
Faith Groups call for Changes on the US-Mexico Border in a letter to incoming DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano January 24th, 2009
The Missionary Oblates JPIC office has joined the ecumenical faith community in a letter addressed to incoming Secretary for the U.S Department of Homeland Security, Honorable Janet Napolitano calling for immediate changes in border security that address the environmental and humanitarian crisis there.
Immigration and Border Reform prospects in the new 111th Congress January 9th, 2009
In coalition with partners, we have lined up several advocacy actions to urge Congressional action on this issue.
Despite the strong focus on economic issues, the U.S. Senate has taken a step to act. A Senate bill, Stronger Economy, Stronger Border Act of 2009 (S.9) to strengthen the United States economy, includes a provision for funding for more effective border and employment enforcement, and for other purposes. It was introduced by Majority leader Harry Reid [D-NV] with 12 cosponsors on January 7.
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