Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

Corporate gatekeepers and big tech monopolists are making it more difficult than ever for independent media to survive. Please chip in today.

Pramila Jayapal Trump family separation

"This is cruel and inhumane treatment and we cannot allow it to continue," Jayapal wrote. (Photo: Rep. Pramila Jayapal/Twitter)

After Visiting Immigrant Mothers Detained By Trump, Pramila Jayapal Demands End to 'Cruel and Barbaric' Family Separation Policy

"What I heard from the women being held at the federal detention facility today was saddening and disturbing. Every asylum-seeker should be immediately released, reunited with their children, and connected to legal services."

Jake Johnson

As the "pure, unadulterated evil" of President Donald Trump's family separation policy becomes more glaring with each passing day, Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) on Saturday visited over 170 immigrant women detained by the Trump administration at a federal facility in Washington and found that the "vast majority of the mothers have not spoken with their children in weeks and they have no idea where they are."

"Every asylum-seeker should be immediately released, reunited with their children and connected to legal services. Anything less is cruel and barbaric."
—Rep. Pramila Jayapal

"What I heard from the women today being held at the detention center was heartbreaking. They are there only because of the Trump administration's cruel new 'zero tolerance' policies of family separation," Jayapal wrote after speaking with the migrant women, the vast majority of whom are asylum-seekers. "I call on the Trump administration to release all of these individuals immediately, to give them access to attorneys to quickly process their asylum claims, and for them to be immediately reunited with their children."

"Anything less is cruel and barbaric," Jayapal added.

In addition to calling for an end to Trump's family separation policy—which, by some estimates, has ripped over 1,000 children from their parents in recent weeks—Jayapal also relayed asylum-seekers' harrowing accounts of their time detained at Border Patrol facilities, where they were denied access to food and water and abused by border agents, who "told them that their 'families would not exist anymore' and that they would 'never see their children again.'"

"This is cruel and inhumane treatment and we cannot allow it to continue," Jayapal wrote.

As Common Dreams reported on Thursday, Jayapal led a group of 111 House Democrats in calling for the defunding of the Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) family separation practices.

In her statement after speaking with the detained immigrant mothers—many of whom "spoke of fleeing threats of rape, gang violence, and political persecution" in their home countries—Jayapal vowed to "continue to push to defund ICE, to completely reform the immigration detention system and end mass prosecutions by the Department of Justice, and defund any [DHS] programs that break up families."


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

We've had enough. The 1% own and operate the corporate media. They are doing everything they can to defend the status quo, squash dissent and protect the wealthy and the powerful. The Common Dreams media model is different. We cover the news that matters to the 99%. Our mission? To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good. How? Nonprofit. Independent. Reader-supported. Free to read. Free to republish. Free to share. With no advertising. No paywalls. No selling of your data. Thousands of small donations fund our newsroom and allow us to continue publishing. Can you chip in? We can't do it without you. Thank you.

Greenhouse Gases Trapped Nearly 50% More Heat Last Year Than in 1990: NOAA

"Getting hot in here," said one climate campaigner. "Gotta get congressmen and senators to do more midday outdoor events in their dark suits."

Jessica Corbett ·


'Perverse' Supreme Court Ruling 'Effectively Ensures That Innocent People Will Remain Imprisoned'

"This is radical. This is horrifying. This is extremely scary," said one public defender.

Jessica Corbett ·


Arizona, West Virginia Residents Risk Arrest to Demand End to Filibuster

"Our democracy is on life support," said campaigners. "There's no time to ask nicely."

Julia Conley ·


Campaign Launches 'Summer of Action' to Protect Medicare From Stealth Privatization

Medicare "is under threat today from the constant efforts of private insurance companies and for-profit investors who want to privatize it and turn it into yet another shameful opportunity to make money," said Rep. Pramila Jayapal.

Kenny Stancil ·


Florida Student's Graduation Speech About Curly Hair Highlights Cruelty of 'Don't Say Gay' Law

Having to use a euphemism to discuss his identity "was a really dehumanizing decision," said Zander Moricz. "I just had to be clever about it—but I shouldn't have had to be."

Jessica Corbett ·

Common Dreams Logo