We are not only facing a humanitarian crisis, but a crisis of values as well
The leadership of the San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium (SDIRC), a coalition of nearly 20 community, faith, labor, and legal organizations released the following statement in response the current humanitarian crisis migrant families are facing in Southern California.
Alor Calderon, Chair of the San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium and Program Director at the Employee Rights Center:
The issue of unaccompanied minors fleeing their home countries is a humanitarian crisis, not an immigration crisis, and should be treated as such.
Furthermore, we are not only facing a humanitarian crisis but a crisis of values as well.
We need a surge of values when dealing with a situation such as what we are witnessing. We must respond to a real crisis with understanding and compassion to act in the best interests of the children who would face unimaginable violence should they be returned to the origin of the crisis.
We call on the good people of San Diego to raise their voices for reason and not let the minority of hateful voices skew this issue. The children need you. Now is not the time to be silent.
Pedro Rios, Community Representative for the SDIRC and Program Director of the San Diego Office of the American Friends Service Committee:
It is deplorable that people espousing anti-immigrant hate language created unnecessary tension and fear for immigrant mothers and their children.
Even more concerning is that elected officials in the City of Murrieta instigated this tension. Mothers and their children on these buses have suffered through enough trauma.
At every moment, including while housed at Border Patrol facilities, the due process rights of the mothers and their children should be respected and they should be provided with every opportunity to have their cases thoroughly reviewed in order to ensure their prompt release.
Rabbi Laurie Coskey, Faith Representative of the SDIRC and Executive Director of the Interfaith Center for Worker Justice:
At all times, and especially at times of crisis, we must lead with our shared values. All religions of the world share the belief that all people should be treated with dignity and respect.
The refugees coming from Central America are human beings just like you and I, the children are just like our children, and they are afraid.
People of good will must stand up to hate and call for compassion, dignity and respect in the treatment of these vulnerable refugees.