Press Release

AFT President Randi Weingarten on the Trump Administration’s Cancellation of Critical Resources for Minors in Migrant Shelters

For Release: 

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Contact:

Sarah Hager
202-393-5684
shager@aft.org

WASHINGTON—Statement of American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten following the announcement that the Trump administration is canceling English classes, recreational programs and legal aid for unaccompanied minors staying in federal migrant shelters nationwide:

“This is a cruel, craven and illegal move. Kids who have been separated from their parents, caged and dehumanized, did not cause their circumstances—yet this administration insists on treating them with blatant and inhuman disregard.

“This action isn’t only unjust, it’s illegal. It violates the settlement in Flores v. Reno, which ruled explicitly that detained children are required to have access to things like education services, English language training, recreation time and social work staff. How you treat children says a lot about your character and your values, and with at least six migrant children having died in federal custody in the last year and countless more having suffered, Donald Trump has failed them and a generation of kids looking to this country for a better life, opportunity and an education.”

 

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The AFT represents 1.7 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.