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Politicians to powwow today with faith leaders over separating families seeking asylum

TODAY, Thursday, June 21 at 12:15 PM in Arlington, U.S. Sens. Mark R. Warner and Tim Kaine (both D-VA) will hold a discussion with Northern Virginia faith leaders and immigrant advocates to discuss the Trump Administration policy of separating children from their families at the southern border.

Under immense pressure to end the cruel policy, President Trump signed an executive order yesterday to stop automatically separating children from their parents at the border, at least temporarily, instead planning to detain parents and children together indefinitely.

The Administration has said there is no effort underway to reunite the more than 3,200 children who have already been separated from their parents, and there are still many concerns and unanswered questions.

Leaders from a variety of religious faiths have been outspoken in their opposition to the family separation policy, which the Administration adopted in April and which child welfare experts have said traumatizes children by needlessly and cruelly taking them from their parents as they seek asylum in the United States.

On Tuesday, Sens. Warner and Kaine wrote to the Secretaries of Homeland Security and Health & Human Services to press the Administration on the policy, which has been condemned by the Pope, the Rev. Franklin Graham, the Southern Baptist Convention, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, the United Methodist Church, the United Church of Christ, the Sikh Coalition, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the Union for Reform Judaism, the Islamic Society of North America, and numerous other religious organizations and interfaith leaders, as well as the American Academy of Pediatrics, whose president calls the practice “child abuse.”

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