Administration Pauses Prosecution of Refugee Families
Washington, D.C.—In response to today’s reports that the Trump Administration has temporarily paused prosecutions of parents who enter the United States between official border points, Human Rights First’s Jennifer Quigley released the following statement:
While this is a step in the right direction, until the Trump Administration completely rescinds its zero-tolerance policy, vulnerable refugees will still be imprisoned and traumatized simply for seeking protection. So far this administration has rolled out conflicting and confusing directives in response to the national outrage over zero-tolerance prosecutions, and until there is a complete rollback of this inhumane policy, families are still in danger. The bottom line is that seeking protection in the United States is not illegal, and these families shouldn’t be prosecuted in the first place.
The Trump Administration has simply replaced family separation with family incarceration, despite the fact that detention is unnecessary and successful alternatives to detention exist. Instead of paying exorbitant amounts of money to hold traumatized children in prisons, the government could invest in case management programs that are a fraction of the cost and ensure that individuals show up for court 99 percent of the time.