National Coalition for Latinxs with Disabilities (CNLD) Statement on “Zero-Tolerance” Policy that Separated Over 2,300 Children from Their Families
The National Coalition for Latinxs with Disabilities (CNLD) is outraged and heartbroken over the continued infliction of trauma and distress in our immigrant community. For decades, our government has assaulted immigrants and perpetuated fear. Few exceptions in policy have been due to long and hard fought grassroots efforts. However, this Administration’s “zero-tolerance” policy is a new low.
Tearing children from their parents and placing them in cages is cruel and inhumane. It is beyond politics and simply morally wrong. Our government has inflicted irreparable harm on the over 2,300 children it separated from their parents in the last two months and must be held accountable. We call on politicians - on both sides of the aisle - to stop using immigrants as political pawns. It is incredible that we need to remind our politicians that: immigrants are human beings, and whether young or old, coming as families or alone, they deserve to be treated with dignity.
The President’s Executive Order to end family separation last week is insufficient. It has failed to reunite every child separated from their parents. The EO also maintains the criminalization of migration and seeks indefinite detention of families, two policies which we oppose. We applaud the efforts on the ground to reunite as many children as swiftly as possible.
We unite in solidarity with all the activists, organizations, and public officials who are denouncing the “Zero-Tolerance” policy. We urge these individuals and organizations to not only call out the current policies and rhetoric as steeped in racism but also in disablism, the belief that Disabled people are inferior to the non-disabled. Detention centers have been and continue to be inaccessible, lack proper medical and psychological services, and can themselves inflict or exacerbate injury and trauma.
Everyone who has come together to demonstrate, donate, appeal to their elected officials, and share their outrage on social media gives CNLD hope. We especially appreciate the strong show of support from the Disability Rights community in calling out these immigration policies. Disability Rights are Immigrant Rights and vice versa.
How to Help
We urge all CNLD members and supporters to fight the “zero-tolerance” policy. Families Belong Together marches will be held across the country this Saturday, June 30th. Click here to find an event near you.
Often protest marches are not accessible to everyone in the disability community. As such, we urge event coordinators to plan accessible events. We also note that activism and participation in the fight takes many forms and are not exclusive to attending marches.
Continue to contact your representatives using Resistbot (texting 504-09), Tweeting, emailing, or calling. To find your representatives’ information, click here.
Since its founding in fall 2016, CNLD has received numerous requests for collaboration from both immigrant rights and disability rights organizations to address the intersection of immigration and disability. As such, CNLD has created a National Immigration and Disability Working Group, comprised of immigrant and disability rights organizations across the U.S. that are interested in building collaborative efforts. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
CNLD continues to support and build bridges on intersectional efforts between the Immigrant Rights and Disability Rights communities; our central goal is to dialogue and strategize together. Sign up for our mailing list to stay in touch with our growing efforts.