Letter: Border detention camps a disgrace
August 2, 2019

Dear Editor:

As a person of faith, my heart breaks at the cruel and inhumane treatment of migrants and refugees – especially children – at our southern border. It seems each day the news reports another child’s death or story of the deplorable conditions in which children are held while in U.S. custody.

Children are held by Border Patrol in jail-like facilities for weeks at a time without contact with family members, regular access to showers, clean clothes, toothbrushes, medical treatment or proper beds. Many are sick. They are separated from adult caretakers – including infants and toddlers – without any provisions for their care. Often, older children who are also being held in detention step in and do their best to care for the younger ones. How has this been allowed to go on?

Our country, which we just celebrated a few weeks ago, has always stood for human rights and protection of the vulnerable, and welcoming the stranger. Children are certainly the most vulnerable among us, yet we are treating them with cruelty and indifference. Now is the time for Congress to step up and protect these children. No child belongs in detention or in a cage. We are better than this.

Sister Kathy Brazda, CSJ, Chicago, IL