CLEVELAND, OH — Today, U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) stood with faith leaders in Cleveland as they stand together to denounce the Trump Administration’s treatment of children and families detained at the U.S. southern border.
“The news coming out of our southern border is appalling,” Brown said. “This isn’t a partisan issue, and Ohioans of all faiths and backgrounds are saying with one voice: the treatment of these children and these families is outrageous and unacceptable.”
Brown was joined today at Trinity Cathedral by northeast Ohio faith leaders, including B.J. Owens, Dean of Trinity Cathedral, Pastor Veronica Goines of Forest Hill Church, and Rabbi Joshua Caruso of the Anshe Chesed Fairmount Temple.
“Our Jewish faith demands of us concern for the stranger in our midst. Our own people’s history as ‘strangers’ reminds us of the many struggles faced by immigrants today and compels our commitment to an immigration system in this country that is compassionate and just,” said Rabbi Joshua Caruso, Anshe Chesed Fairmount Temple.
Brown is supporting legislation that would guarantee that children can remain with their parents and make sure all families are reunited. The Keep Families Together Act would keep immigrant families together by preventing the Department of Homeland Security from taking children from their parents at the border.
The Keep Families Together Act was developed in consultation with child welfare experts to ensure the federal government is acting in the best interest of children. The bill allows immigrant children to be separated from their parents only in the event they are being trafficked or abused by their parents. To provide an additional layer of protection, the bill provides for an immediate review by a superior upon the recommendation to separate, and only after consultation with a child welfare expert.
Last week, Brown voted for emergency funding to improve conditions for children and families seeking asylum at the southern border and curb President Trump’s policies that have furthered the migrant crisis at the border.
Brown also joined colleagues in calling for the federal government to investigate federal contractors in charge of facilities where children are being kept at the U.S. southern border. The letters to the Government Accountability Office and the Suspension and Debarment official and Inspector General at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services were sent after disturbing reports of hungry, sick, and dirty children being held in federal contractor facilities near the border.
All three letters urged government officials to decide if federal contractors and grantees are in breach of contractual obligations or federal regulations and should therefore face financial consequences.
For a PDF copy of the letters, click here.