The Day That ICE Came: How Worksite Raids Are Once Again Harming Children and Families

Wendy Cervantes, Rebecca Ullrich and Vanessa Meraz
Date of Publication: 
January, 2020
Source Organization: 

Enforcement-only immigration policies without adequate humanitarian guidelines significantly harm immigrant parents, their children and their communities. The Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) conducted three site visits to states that had experienced large-scale worksite raids since January 2017. The raids in Ohio, Texas, and Mississippi, where 260, 280 and 680 people were arrested, respectively, were the largest in more than a decade. The report found that families experienced separation ranging from hours to months, as well as long-term separation resulting from deportation. Children experienced significant harm, including reports of suicidal thoughts, symptoms of PTSD, as well as developmental regression in younger children resulting from disruptions to their education and family life. Toxic stress, economic strain, food and housing insecurity, disruption of routine, and devastating loss of a parent combined to further undermine the development of affected children, as well as adversely affecting parents, and straining the material and mental/emotional resources of community leaders and organizations. While the report found that the affected communities demonstrated hope, strength and resilience after these raids, the authors contend that policy decisions must take human wellbeing into account to preserve and foster the future for all of America’s children.

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Cervantes, W., Ullrich, R. & Meraz, V. (2020). The Day That ICE Came: How Worksite Raids Are Once Again Harming Children and Families. Center for Law and Social Policy