Latinos in Reading, Pa. heartbroken over president's family separation policy

Walter Perez Image
Wednesday, June 20, 2018
Local reaction to family separation at border
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Local reaction to family separation at border. Walter Perez reports during Action News at 4pm on June 19, 2018.

READING, Pa. (WPVI) -- Reaction to the border crisis, and the Trump administration's policy of separating children from their families, has been coming in swift and strong from people around the country.

In defense of the initiative, White House officials say the zero-tolerance policy involves all cases of illegal entry into the country, and that legal protocol prohibits detaining children with their parents because the children are not charged with a crime.

But Michael Toledo, President and CEO of Centro Hispano, a Latino support organization in Reading, says regardless of how the laws are interpreted, a sense of decency needs to play a role.

Toledo says, "This is not a Latino issue, it's an American issue. The American people need to come together and say enough is enough."

Romeo Caranco-Guzman is from Mexico and now lives in Reading. He says (translated), "I think it's very sad and very painful for the families. I hope someone tells the president that most of us are good people just looking for a better life."

The most recent reports from Customs and Border Protection officials have the number of children categorized as "unaccompanied alien children" under the new initiative at 2342.

With that, Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro has joined 20 other attorneys general demanding President Trump rethink this policy.

Earlier Tuesday, Shapiro released a statement reading, in part, "The Trump Administration Family Separation Policy is un-American and violates the core principles and values of our nation... President Trump has the sole authority to rescind his policy and should stop using children as leverage in political battles."


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