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CWS Calls on Congress to Hold the Administration Accountable for its Deadly Policies
Washington, D.C. – In response to reports of the tragic death of Jackelin Caal, a 7-year-old girl from Guatemala who died of exhaustion and dehydration while in Customs and Border Protection (CBP) custody, Rev. John L. McCullough, President and CEO of Church World Service issued the following statement:
“This innocent 7-year-old girl, made in the image of God, came to our border to ask us for protection. Her death while in border patrol custody is a direct result of the policies instituted and carried out by the administration’s immoral war on immigrants.
“Condemnation and censure seem hardly enough as we mourn for this innocent child and her grieving family. How many tears must be shed, how many prayers have to be uttered, how many stories of fear and suffering must be told before as a nation we decide that we will no longer tolerate this inhumanity? People don’t walk thousands of miles unless they are desperate for freedom at the end of their journey. When they arrive at our border they cannot be treated as if their lives don’t count. Everything about our religious heritage and teaching shouts, ‘They do’; and anyone who says otherwise is flat out wrong. This young girl has a name, Jackeline Caal, and she had a whole life to hope in. Justice means to immediately end zero tolerance policies toward asylum seekers and to stop detaining immigrant families and children. And it demands that Congress hold the administration accountable for policies that can make take the life out of people who also yearn to be free.”
Since 1946, Church World Service has supported refugees, immigrants and other displaced individuals, in addition to providing sustainable relief and development solutions to communities that wrestle with hunger and poverty. Learn more about our work and join our global homebase for refugee solidarity at GreaterAs1.org.