South McAllen, TX – Following today’s vigil with Secretary Julian Castro and Representative Filemon Vela (TX-34), held in front of the Ursula Border Patrol Processing Center in South McAllen, TX in support of all the children held inside without their parents on Father’s Day, experts are available for comment regarding the Trump administration’s cruel policies of separating parents from their children at the border and traumatizing immigrant families. Today’s vigil built upon recent events on June 1 and June 14 and is part of the ongoing #FamiliesBelongTogether campaign to stop the separation of families.
Ai-jen Poo, Director, National Domestic Workers Alliance and co-founder of its feminist immigration campaign “We Belong Together”:
Ai-jen has been organizing immigrant women workers for over two decades, forging pathways to sustainable, quality jobs for the caregiving workforce and ensuring access to affordable child care and elder care for all working families. Ai-jen is a 2014 MacArthur Fellow and is listed on Fortune.com’s 50 World’s greatest Leaders. She is the author of The Age of Dignity: Preparing for the Elder Boom in a Changing America. Follow her on Twitter at @aijenpoo.
George Goehl, Director, People’s Action:
George leads a 30-state national effort to unite poor and working class people across race and place to take on the people and systems that drive and benefit from inequality, destroy our planet, and sow racism and racial division. He is the father of a 7-year-old daughter who is with him in McAllen to bring a message of support from other children across the country.
Leah is a U.S. citizen who lives in Florida with her undocumented parents and sister who used to be a Dreamer with DACA. Leah became a leader in NDWA’s immigration campaign “We Belong Together” several years ago after fearing she could be separated from her mother due to the rise in anti-immigrant rhetoric and policies. Since then, Leah has written letters to kids in detention, traveled to Washington DC to ask Congress for immigration reform and to protect Dreamers like her sister, and has met with the Miami-Dade Mayor asking him to keep sanctuary city policies in her community.
Marco Lopez, Community Organizer, LUPE:
Born in Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Marco migrated to the US at a young age. He graduated with a BS in Park, Recreation, and Tourism Sciences from Texas A&M. In college, he organized protests against the Iraq War and for in-state tuition for Undocumented Aggies. Post college, he assisted with several labor campaigns that included harassment, wage theft, and pickets as a delegate for the IWW. At LUPE, he uses his talents to better our local communities.