Hundreds rally in Harrisburg to call for reuniting immigrant families

Clay Curtis
July 1, 2018

Tens of thousands of people have joined nationwide protests across the United States over the Trump administration's strict migrant policy.

Starting in early May, in an attempt to staunch the flow of tens of thousands of migrants to the southern U.S. border every month, Trump ordered the arrest of adults crossing the boundary illegally, including those seeking asylum.

They wore shirts with slogans calling for the abolition of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the agency responsible for deportations, as well as stopping cybercrime, counterfeit merchandise, criminal gangs and child sex predators.

It also isn't clear if families who are kept together will remain so or be separated after 20 days due to an existing court order.

Thousands are expected to flood Boston's City Hall Plaza on Saturday for a rally against the Trump administration's separation of migrant families.

Lafayette Square, which can hold only a few thousand people, was selected because when organizers applied for a National Park Service permit, larger spots already were taken. She said she was anxious about the children taken from their families, and their parents left without knowing how to find them. Meanwhile, illegal immigrants are just crossing the border and receiving public benefits.

"We are all immigrants", one said. "Keep marching." In addition, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and Senator Kirsten Gillibrand have called for ICE to be abolished.

"We appreciate that these individuals have expressed an interest in and concern with the critical issue of securing our nation's borders and enforcing our immigration laws", Houlton said.

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In response to a federal court order, the Trump administration announced a new policy with regard to migrant families on Friday.

"Honestly, I am blown away".

"I wanted them to be part of it so they decorated their signs", their mother said.

Though many at the rallies were seasoned anti-Trump demonstrators, others were new to activism, including parents who said they felt compelled to act after heart-wrenching accounts of families torn apart.

Nationwide, groups came together in city parks and downtown squares, while others converged on the worldwide bridge between El Paso, Texas, and Juarez, Mexico.

Much of the uproar over the separation policy came after news organisations reported children being held in cells, converted warehouses and desert tents around the country.

"So I beg everyone, please release these children, give my son back to me", she said through an interpreter and wept.

Casey, whose re-election campaign has accused Barletta for flip-flopping on the issue, said in a statement, "The policy of separating children from their families and housing them in cages is straight from the pit of hell. There is still work to be done to reunite these children with their parents and ensure this never happens again, which is why I'm so thankful to everyone making their voices heard across Pennsylvania".

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