Reports about children being separated from their parents at the border are horrendous, and it was reported that at least 2,342 children have now been separated from their parents at the border. ProPublica exposed an audio recording of several children crying helplessly for their parents as they were being separated.
The sights and sounds of these children are becoming harder to bear. On Tuesday, it was reported that one immigrant shelter worker finally quit his job because he was ordered to separate two brothers and a sister hugging each other. Antar Davidson finally decided his time was up at the Arizona children’s shelter.
‘I was told that they should not be able to hug, and (I) basically realized that being in Southwest Key would mean — continuing to remain there, despite the good I was doing — would mean that I had basically come up to doing things I felt were morally wrong.’
The non-profit group, Southwest Key, runs 26 immigrant children’s shelters across Texas, Arizona, and California. According to CNN:
‘The former shelter employee explained how the job sharply changed after the Trump administration began its zero-tolerance policy toward illegal immigrant crossings. The new policy has had the immediate effect of separating parents from their children with an unclear process for getting them back together.’
‘Over the past six weeks, they’ve been seeing more and more kids who weren’t prepared for the situation, that were basically lifted from their parents’ arms. And as such, they were running around and crying for their mother and basically generally displaying signs of trauma, as any child would who doesn’t know where they are or where their parent is.’
‘Southwest Key has experienced, trained staff to provide comfort and counseling and to help the child feel more comfortable. Hugging is absolutely allowed.’
‘(The) job reviews which kind of show not only the horror … that the children are going through, but also that the workers are going through. The issue at Southwest Key is many problems wrapped up in one.’
‘It’s easy for a person on an official visit being shown by the organization itself to determine that the facility is nice. It’s a different thing to basically work there day in and day out. You can’t determine the widespread treatment. You have so many interactions, so many facilities, so many employees that on one visit to unequivocally say that everything is fine is quite a stretch.’