Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Deportation Hurts U.S. Citizen Children

From Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard

New study shows kids suffer detrimental health consequences after their parents are removed
Washington, DC—Today, Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard reacted to the release of a new study by the NGO Human Impact Partners which documents the severe and lasting consequences that American children suffer when their parents are deported.  The group’s research, which was based in part on interviews with Los Angeles families, shows that kids who lose the care and support of a parent as a result of immigration enforcement actions are significantly more likely to suffer from anxiety and withdrawal.  They also risk falling into poverty, going hungry and dropping out of school.  At a time when Congress is considering a comprehensive overhaul of our broken immigration system, the Congresswoman believes these troubling findings build the case for ending the unjust deportation of parents and implementing new policies to help keep families together.
Said Rep. Roybal-Allard: “It shouldn’t surprise us that the mental health of young children suffers when their mothers and fathers are abruptly wrenched from their lives or that these kids struggle in school after experiencing the traumatizing loss of a parent.  On the other hand, it should shock our conscience as a nation that our government is responsible for the pain and anguish of these vulnerable young people.  While it’s critical that any comprehensive immigration reform proposal include protections for immigrant families, this study shows we can’t continue waiting for Congress to act.  I once again call on the Administration to end the unjust deportation of parents.”
Rep. Roybal-Allard is the author of a bill, the Help Separated Families Act, which would help to reunify the children of detained or deported immigrants with family members.  In March, she led 31 of her colleagues in sending a letter to DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano, urging her to implement guidelines that will help prevent families from being permanently separated as a result of our government’s immigration enforcement actions. 


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