Loyola president Jo Ann Rooney joined the chorus of voices condemning the practice of separating migrant families at the U.S.-Mexico border in a statement released Thursday.
“Forced family separations are contrary to our Jesuit, Catholic values and our ideals as a nation,” Rooney said. “Such practices greatly increase trauma for children and adults who are already at high risk.”
Since U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced a “zero-tolerance” policy on people crossing the southern border illegally — meaning all will be referred for prosecution — on May 7, border patrol agents have separated more than 2,300 children from parents, according to federal officials.
President Donald Trump signed an executive order June 20 aimed at amending the policy — after insisting for days he couldn’t change it — to instead detain families illegally crossing into the United States together indefinitely.
However, this doesn’t mean the 2,300 kids already separated will be reunited soon, The New York Times reported.
Rooney said she made the statement in conjunction with Pope Francis and the U.S. Council of Bishops’ call for the end of family separations. She also urged Loyola students and staff to call their representatives and demand action to end the separations and push for reunification.
Illinois Senator Dick Durbin tweeted his condemnation of the Trump immigration policy Thursday.