LOS ANGELES (July 17, 2014) — In light of the recent surge of unaccompanied children fleeing violence and gang warfare in Central America, Asian Americans Advancing Justice (Advancing Justice), with affiliates in Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington, D.C. and San Francisco, issues the following statement:
“Advancing Justice calls on the Obama Administration to respond compassionately to this humanitarian crisis and to uphold due process for these children in compliance with existing law. We also call on President Obama to enact bold and inclusive administrative relief that would start to turn back the tide of the two million deportations that have happened under his watch.
Just yesterday, undocumented Filipino American activist and journalist, Jose Antonio Vargas, was detained and released by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), in an effort to draw attention to and support Central American migrant children and undocumented families trapped at the border. Mr. Vargas’ detention highlights the injustices that happen everyday to immigrants, refugees, and their families.
As civil rights organizations serving Asian American and Pacific Islander immigrants, we stand with the Central American migrant children and families seeking safety at the border, and the entire undocumented immigrant community.
In order to live up to our American ideal of being a nation of immigrants, it is imperative that there be a fair and humane response to the crisis at the border, and to the larger crisis that we face with the broken immigration system. We need Congress and the Obama Administration to provide solutions that stop criminalizing undocumented families trapped at the border, protect the human and legal rights of refugee children fleeing violence in Central America, and uphold critical due process protections for these children.”