Rosa DeLauro Calls Trump Zero-Tolerance Immigration Policy ‘Child Abuse’
U.S. Rep. Rosa DeLauro gathered with colleagues outside the U.S. Capitol Wednesday, further condemning President Donald Trump over stricter immigration policies that have left a growing number of children separated from their families — a situation she said is child abuse.
Officials said the policy, enacted by Attorney General Jeff Session in April, orders the prosecution of anyone crossing the border illegally, regardless if they are fleeing violence or life-threatening circumstances.
But, they said, a consequence of the action is a 20 percent increase in the number of children detained in government facilities as they are separated from their parents.
“The Trump zero-tolerance policy is a child abuse,” DeLauro, a Democrat, said outside the Capitol.
She said the policy has government officials detaining children, some as young as 1 year old. DeLauro told of a woman fleeing violence in Hondorous, who was stopped at the border and forced to give her child to government workers, who drove off with out her. DeLauro said it took the woman several months to get her child back.
“These kids are being ripped apart from their families,” DeLauro said. The separations are not an accident or rare, as government officials claim, she said.
“This is the Trump administration policy,” DeLauro said.
She added that Trump was talking about building tent cities for the displaced children. “The president of the United States is talking about constructing internment camps for children.”
Last week, more than 100 people gathered outside the federal courthouse in Hartford to protest the new policy.
“We’re calling attention to the violence that is happening,” one of the event’s organizers, Vanessa Suarez, said during the protest. “It’s not new. We saw this in the last administration, but it has become more aggressive under Trump. He calls it zero tolerance, but they are actually zero-humanity policies.”
DeLauro quoted experts who say this type of separation causes trauma for the children, which can have a prolonged impact on their life. “This zero-tolerance policy could inflict lifelong scars on these children,” DeLauro said.