Halt deportations and welcome asylum seekers
Background: By warning citizens against traveling anywhere in the world, the United States acknowledges the life-threatening risk of transmission or infection of COVID-19. Despite these warnings, however, the U.S. continues to deport individuals to Honduras and Guatemala.
These Central American countries currently have no more than a few dozen COVID-19 cases, but the limitations of their public health systems would make a broader outbreak particularly devastating. For this reason, the countries are on lockdown, and migrant shelters, transportation companies, and social service agencies are currently closed, so people arriving to airports or bus terminals will find themselves with nowhere to go.
Furthermore, the United States recently closed its borders to asylum seekers, leaving thousands of people in camps south of the U.S.-Mexico border where they lack access to hygiene items or medical care. By closing its southern border, denying hearings to asylum seekers, and continuing to deport people to Mexico and Central America, the U.S. government is not only putting migrants at risk, it is undermining global protection against the COVID-19 pandemic.
Faith reflection: In this time of global need, we should respond with love and compassion to all, especially the widow, the orphan and the migrants – those closest to God’s heart. “How does God’s love abide in anyone who has the world’s goods and sees a brother or sister in need and yet refuses help?” (1 John 3:17). Let us live out God’s love.
Action: Urge your members of Congress to halt deportations, welcome those seeking asylum in the U.S. and protect the health and security of all immigrants, including those who are in detention centers. Use the form below to send an email to your representative. (Once you fill out your info and click Submit, it will bring up a page with sample text that you can edit). Please take action today!