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Statement on Immigration: By Victor Ruiz, Executive Director of Esperanza, Inc. 


At the core of our mission at Esperanza, Inc. is also a commitment to support our children and their families.  We strive to help them capture the opportunities available in our community, so that they may enjoy the quality of life with which the majority of those of us in this room are blessed. Families are the foundational element of our society.  Not just as Clevelanders or as Americans, but as part of a compassionate, global society.


That is why as an advocate for Cleveland’s children and families, I must take a moment today to express my deep concern for the separation of children – the most vulnerable in our society – from their parents at our nation’s border and here in Northeast Ohio.  Bishop Pérez expressed it so eloquently earlier this week when he said “this is not a political issue, but a moral one.”  He added that with the U.S. immigration policy “we have lost our moral compass.”


I am encouraged that the president reversed our nation’s border policy and that families will no longer be separated.  However, I remain concerned about the welfare of the children that have been already separated and the manner and speed with which they will be reunited with their parents.  And, let us not forget that separation of families is not just happening at our borders, but right here in Northeast Ohio.  I am deeply concerned for the welfare of our local children who have been separated from their hard-working mothers and fathers as a result of recent ICE raids.


This division of families is in direct conflict with our mission at Esperanza. Therefore, I call on our representatives, locally and in Washington, to move quickly to reunite families, at the borders and in our local communities, and to find compassionate immigration reform that preserves family unity.  We must find a path for these law-abiding, hard-working men and women – for many of whom the United States is the only home they recall – to obtain legal status.  As an organization, we will also work with any of our families that have been affected to support them in every way we can to protect the welfare of these innocent children.


I ask all of you here today to join me, so that, collectively, our voices will be the guide to redirect that compass toward a solution that protects our society’s most vulnerable and more accurately reflects our values as a nation.


Copyright © 1989 to 2018 by [LaPrensa Publications Inc.]. All rights reserved.
Revised: 06/26/18 13:23:38 -0700.




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