Letter from Sister Donna Markham OP To Secretary Nielsen

Dear Secretary Nielsen:

I write to you today on behalf of Catholic Charities USA expressing my strong concern over ongoing systemic efforts to separate immigrant children from their parents.

Catholic Charities USA is a national organization representing 166 diocesan Catholic Charities agencies that see first-hand the devastating, life-long impact separation can have on children. Agency staff see the trauma in the foster care children we serve, they see it in the children missing a father or mother, and now they see it in the migrant children placed into foster care and group facilities because they have been taken away from their parents.

As a clinical psychologist, I have also seen the consequences that not having a parent can have on a child, and it is deeply troubling that the administration has chosen to create a generation of traumatized children in the name of border security. Surely as a nation we can debate the best way to secure our border without resorting to creating life-long trauma for children, some of whom are mere toddlers.