Detaining Children at the Border

Detaining Children at the Border

Young Women United is firmly rooted in reproductive justice, a transformational change-making framework created by Black women. Core to reproductive justice is being able to decide if and when you become a parent and the ability to parent in dignity and safety.  At the heart of our work is building access to the resources necessary to make decisions for ourselves and our families. This is why we denounce the separation and incarceration of thousands of children and families at the U.S.-Mexico Border.

Across the nation people are still seething over the detention of more than 2,000 children forcibly separated from their parents at the border due to the zero-tolerance policy instituted by the current administration. The separation of families and family deportation are antithetical to New Mexico’s values of dignity and support for families. However, New Mexicans are also forced to face those detentions in a very real manner since some of the facilities holding these decimated families are in the Land of Enchantment.

Many families in our state are no strangers to the want and need for a better life and we continue to have strong ties to our roots in Latin America, Mexico primarily. So, it isn’t difficult for us to imagine circumstances that would cause a family to leave for a new country with just a backpack and the strength to start over. The irony of refugees migrating to the U.S. using the The Salt Roads, renamed El Camino Real on our New Mexican maps, is not lost. Along with a new name, that route also had invisible borders imposed on it that carry the weight of intolerance and define citizen from foreigner. This imposition separates families and incarcerates children as young as 18 months old and requires children as young as three to represent themselves in court proceedings. And even when kept together, there is no timeline for release.

This policy of detention is reminiscent of the Japanese internment camps of the 1940’s and the internment of Native Americans in reservations.

History is already repeating itself, we hope that it will end before it gets worse. Leaders from across the state work on behalf of the refugees, their families, and others impacted by the broken immigration laws such as New Mexico Dream TeamEl Centro de Igualdad y DerechosNew Mexico Immigrant Law Center, and the Medicine Drum Circle

The Medicine Drum Circle has been gathering in Albuquerque at 3rd and Lomas everyday to protest this cruel family separation. YWU applauds these organizations and community members and will be at the vigil Thursday, September 20th at 3rd and Lomas standing in solidarity and sending out prayers to the families and children currently being held at the border. We invite others to come out and join us from 4-5:30. 

#FamiliasUnidasNoDivididas #FamilesBelongTogether #EndDetention