Urge Congress to protect those seeking asylum in the U.S.
Background: Asylum seekers are migrants who flee their homes because of a fear of violence or persecution. U.S. and international laws state that anyone has a right to apply for asylum in the United States. However, several recent changes in U.S. immigration policy are preventing asylum seekers from finding safety in the United States.
One is the "Remain in Mexico" policy which forces asylum seekers to wait in dangerous locations where they face violence and extortion and effectively denies them access to lawyers and family support. A second policy change is the creation of “Asylum Cooperative Agreements” under which the U.S. has, for example, sent more than 200 Honduran migrants to Guatemala where there are not structures in place to adequately support asylum seekers.
Faith reflection: Jesus encouraged us to welcome the stranger as we welcome Jesus himself. Instead of turning away people seeking safety, we should be looking for ways to offer greater support.
Action: Urge your members of Congress to welcome those seeking asylum in the U.S. and to focus on policy solutions that meet humanitarian needs and address the root causes of migration rather than on dangerous policies such as Remain in Mexico and the Asylum Cooperative Agreements.
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Photo: Children play with toys at MCC partner Casa Alitas, a house in Tucson, Arizona, where asylum seekers can rest for a few days between being processed by Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers and connecting with family and friends. MCC photo/Katherine Smith.