LOS ANGELES (CNS) - More than 329 families, along with members from leading immigrant rights advocacy and legal organizations, are expected to gather outside Los Angeles City Hall today to protest the Trump administration's policy of separating migrant children from their parents at the border.
The protest comes after U.S. Customs and Border Protection confirmed recently that from May 6-19 of this year, 638 adults traveling with 658 children were prosecuted for improper entry and their children were separated from them, which organizers pointed out is an average of 329 children separated from their parents in a single week.
``Americans believe that children have a right to be with their parents, and that all families have the right to be together and safe,'' said Lucero Chavez, a staff attorney with Public Counsel. ``Many families in other countries cannot count on the protection of law enforcement and face an impossible choice, one that drives them north to the United States where international law offers refuge. In denying refuge, President Trump thinks he can supersede international law.''
The protest is scheduled for 4 p.m. on the south lawn of City Hall.
``The Trump administration must immediately stop this inhumane and un- American policy of stripping children, infants, from the arms of their mothers. Children and parents alike deserve due process and President Trump, in an unprecedented move, has returned us to the dark ages when children were held hostage, used as a bargaining chips against their parents,'' Los Angeles City Councilman Jose Huizar said. ``As Americans, we will not stand for this.''
Attorney General Jeff Sessions has defended the policy of separating parents from their children if they are suspected of crossing the border illegally.
``If people don't want to be separated from their children, they should not bring them with them,'' Sessions said this week during an interview with radio host Hugh Hewitt. ``We've got to get this message out. And you can't be giving immunity to people who bring children with them recklessly and improperly and illegally.''