LULAC Assails Treatment Of Unaccompanied Minors
Nation’s Largest and Oldest Latino Civil Rights Organization Says Latest Revelations Demand Action to Protect Underage Immigrants
Washington, DC - The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) issued the following statement in the wake of the latest revelations on alleged mistreatment of unaccompanied minors at the Fort Bliss Emergency Intake Site (EIS). The eyewitness details of the reported mistreatment are from two federal whistleblowers who came forward and cited countless incidents of gross mismanagement that has resulted in emotional and physical distress to the more than 1,000 minors being housed at the facility.
“LULAC is calling once more for the immediate removal of the minors being detained in these abhorrent conditions,” says Domingo Garcia - LULAC National President. “They must be reunited with their families or loved ones in the United States rather than continue to suffer inhumane mistreatment. LULAC supports the call for a full and open investigation into this intolerable situation including access by humanitarian organizations to the minors housed at the EIS. We urge the Administration to bring in qualified professionals to assess what medical and psychological care these youths need. This must be a priority that is addressed now,” adds Garcia.
The findings were submitted to federal investigators and Congress by the Government Accountability Project, a non-profit whistleblower investigative organization founded in 1977 by the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS). In 2019, LULAC sent an urgent request to Ambassador Fillipo Grandi, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees that the UNHCR intervene and investigate conditions in immigrant detention facilities in the United States. The UNHCR did not respond.
“The safety and well-being of the unaccompanied migrant children should be the number one priority,” says Lydia Guzman, National Chair of the LULAC Immigration Committee. “The children come to our country, fleeing unimaginable conditions, and to learn that they were subjected to many of the same here is just shameful and unforgivable. The whistleblowers should be commended for speaking up. We have the moral obligation to take better care of the children, and when that fails, we should speak up to fix it without fear of retribution. We can do better,” add Guzman.
The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) is the nation’s largest and oldest Hispanic civil rights volunteer-based organization that empowers Hispanic Americans and builds strong Latino communities. Headquartered in Washington, DC, with 1,000 councils around the United States and Puerto Rico, LULAC’s programs, services, and advocacy address the most important issues for Latinos, meeting the critical needs of today and the future. For more information, visit https://lulac.org/