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SALEF Interim Executive Director's Statement on Zero Tolerance Policy

On June 20th, 2018, President Donald Trump signed an executive order which would seemingly end the “Zero Tolerance” policy of separating families seeking refuge at our southern border.


We, the Salvadoran American Leadership and Educational Fund, are infuriated and appalled that the Trump Administration not only adopted the inhumane “Zero Tolerance” policy and ripped families apart, but then, after facing humiliating criticism and losing political leverage, quickly pivoted and hastily passed the newly adopted executive order. The order, which lacks transparency and does not provide a clear path to family unification, is only one of many mis-steps of the Trump administration as it relates to the Latino & Central American community.


The Trump’s administrations historical and continuous attacks on the Latino & Central American community cannot AND should not be ignored. We have witnessed this administration executing their anti-immigrant agenda by rescinding DACA and terminating TPS. Even now, after the executive order was signed to seemingly end the forceful separation of families, the administration has still not disclosed HOW it will handle the back log of roughly 20,0000 children still in detention that need to be reunited with their parents.


The lack of disregard for the lives of the families, specifically children, in detention MUST STOP. The continuous criminalization and aggressions toward the immigrant community MUST STOP.


What we need now is a better way to secure a safe passage and refuge for immigrants seeking survival and a better way of life. What we need are humane polices and procedures at our borders that do not impose violence, humiliation, and tear families apart.


We denounce this administration’s policies to separate families and demand an immediate just and humane unification of families. We can’t measure the trauma and long-term effects experienced by these children detained in such dehumanizing conditions. Enough is enough; let us send this administration a clear message that their racist dehumanizing policies do not represent our values.

Take Action: Support SALEF’s efforts to provide legal representation to separated immigrant children and family unification.

1. We are fighting President Trump's policies in the nation-wide class action case Flores v. Sessions. Salef’s legal staff is working with the Center for Human Rights and Constitutional Law to conduct detention facilities visits to ICE and CBP to ensure that immigrant children are treated humanely. Donate at https://www.crowdrise.com/o/en/team/defend-the-children

2. We are providing legal representation for immigrant children held in detention centers. Legal representation fees can cost approximately $5000.00 per child, so we need monetary donations in order to continue this work. Donate at https://www.crowdrise.com/o/en/team/defend-the-children

3. We are working with Casa Libre – a project of the Center of Human Rights and Constitutional Law, Inc. – that provides housing, legal and social services for unaccompanied minors. Donations are needed to continue to support the work. Please make donation checks out to Center for Human Rights and Constitutional Law, Inc. in the memo portion of the check note Casa Libre. Please mail donations to Casa Libre, Center for Human Rights and Constitutional Law, 256 S. Occidental Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90057.


Visit our website to support our work www.salef.org

President Trump, we implore you to STOP implementing such careless and negligent protocols that will have long lasting effects on these children and their families.


Jocelyn E. Duarte Interim Executive Director