Washington, DC – On the third anniversary of the so-called Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP), a policy that has forced more than 70,000 migrants–including tens of thousands of children–seeking humanitarian protection in the United States to wait in often dangerous conditions in Mexico as their cases proceed, Kids in Need of Defense (KIND) President Wendy Young issued the following statement:
“Even though unaccompanied children are technically exempt from MPP, the policy has directly led to hundreds of unnecessary parent-child separations, creating irreparable harm to the families and leaving children alone and traumatized. Children who remain with their families are also endangered as they live in squalid conditions on Mexico’s northern border at risk of rape, murder, abduction and trafficking by gangs and cartels who prey on them. To live up to its commitments to human rights, due process and family unity, the United States must end MPP as swiftly as possible.”
President Biden pledged to end MPP and protect family unity. While the Administration has taken steps to terminate MPP that have been blocked in the courts, it has also expanded the scope of the program, stripping vulnerable populations of due process and access to protection. As the expanded version of MPP has rolled out across the border in recent weeks, KIND is greatly concerned that families will once again be at risk of violence and torn apart by this dangerous policy.
“We urge the U.S. and Mexican governments to live up to their commitments to human rights, due process, and family unity by ending MPP immediately,” Young added.
KIND documented harms caused by MPP in a 2020 report, FORCED APART: HOW THE “REMAIN IN MEXICO” POLICY PLACES CHILDREN IN DANGER AND SEPARATES FAMILIES.
Media Contact: Megan McKenna, firstname.lastname@example.org, 202-631-9990