Washington, DC – Today, the Welcome with Dignity campaign launched its new national campaign to re-envision how people seeking asylum in the U.S. are welcomed and protected after being forced to flee their homes. The campaign, composed of advocates, activists, regional migration experts and service providers on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border, is the way forward to transforming the immigration system that was completely devastated by Donald Trump and his nationalist henchman, Stephen Miller.
According to Douglas Rivlin, Director of Communication for America’s Voice:
Stephen Miller and Donald Trump tried to make sure valid claims of asylum from people fleeing violence and persecution never reached the inside of a U.S. court where those claims might be approved in accordance with U.S. and international law. The Trump anti-immigrant machine inflicted irreparable damage on children and families in so doing, taking children from their parents, jailing asylum seekers in squalid COVID-19 hotspots, pushing desperate families into Mexico to wait for years and denying the legal right of applicants to petition for asylum altogether.
This great injustice of the Trump years not only needs to be reversed and the policies undone, but the United States must build back a much, much better system of meeting our obligations to follow our own laws regarding families and individuals seeking safety.
We can welcome families, children and adults seeking asylum with dignity and honor the rule of law. The #WelcomeWithDignity campaign will be central in that recovery and rebuilding effort. Today the campaign launches with an impressive array of partners, a compelling video on the meaning of “welcoming” and a commitment from organizations and individuals to hold the President and Congress accountable for reenvisioning how people seeking asylum are allowed to pursue their legal rights and are provided safety. President Biden has taken encouraging steps to address root causes of migration, how unaccompanied minors are handled and reunited with families, and starting to welcome those kept out by Trump and Miller’s destructive policies, but much more needs to be done. The #WelcomeWithDignity campaign is committed to working with the President — and pushing him where appropriate — to restore, rebuild and reinvent how the U.S. saves lives and protects those seeking asylum.