***For Immediate Release***
December 14, 2018
Immigrants & Communities Program Director
Office: (402)438-8853, Ext. 112
Child’s death highlights urgent need for safe asylum process for families
LINCOLN — Today, reports released by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) revealed that a seven-year-old child from Guatemala died while in CBP custody a week ago after she and her father presented themselves to border agents near Lordsburg, NM. The child reportedly suffered from seizures – as of this writing believed to be related to severe dehydration – eight hours after she and her father turned themselves into Border Patrol, and she died less than 24 hours later in an El Paso hospital.
Darcy Tromanhauser, Director of the Immigrants & Communities Program at Nebraska Appleseed, issued the following statement:
“Our hearts break for the 7-year-old Guatemalan girl who died and her father. We can only imagine what they have experienced. Establishing a safe process for asylum seekers is urgent and well within the capability of our nation.
The Administration’s harmful immigration policies have been creating repeated and unnecessary tragedies by turning away asylum seekers at ports of entry: forcing families into dangerous parts of the desert, separating parents and children, holding families in prison-like settings, and devastating communities across the country with large-scale immigration raids. We call on the government to change these policies immediately and prevent this kind of senseless tragedy from ever happening again.”