Family separating at the border at America implemented a policy in Arizona and west Texas last year which was extended border wide in April 2018. Under this policy, migrants who enter the US illegally face misdemeanour charges in court and felony charges if they have illegally crossed the border before. Parents are sent to federal detention and their children to children shelters
As we were walking towards the border my dad had told us that we need to do whatever the policeman told us to do and that we need to be good and learn English once we were taken away. My sister is 14 years old and my dad told her that when we get separated she must not identify them as her parents that way she would have a better chance of being accepted into one of the shelters provided by the government. My sister had to rehearse my granny’s phone number in Mexico and only phone her in six months and this is how my mum and dad will find her.
My family and I have been separated into 3 different states for the last 3 months. My mom and dad were seeking asylum in the US. When we got to the border they took my sister to a different cage to mine
I feel so abandoned by my mom and dad, how can they leave me and my sister for so long. They have not even phoned me yet. I am only 10 years old, why don’t my parents love me. What does this Zero Tolerance Policy mean? The policemen said that my dad is a bad man because he crossed the border unlawfully and that I won’t see him again. I’m so confused and lonely. I have to sleep in a cage with 5 other boys on a mattress and we are using foil sheets as blankets.
I heard some of the boys say that Mr Obama used to allow them to come into the USA but the new President, Mr Trump has no heart for our families and people. I am hungry, and I am cold. There is a little boy that cries all night. No one cares about us. Are we being punished? Did we do something wrong? Some of the boys are very mean and fight with me. I miss my mom’s hugs and kisses and playing with my sister and climbing the tree in our backyard. Why can’t my mom and dad come for me and take me home? The girl from the other cage came to save me from the boys that were bullying me. She reminds me of my sister. I like her. The little boy in our cage got into trouble with the guards the other day because he messed his pants. He got a beating and I felt very sorry for him. I played with him after that and feel like I need to protect him. I play with him and tell him stories. That seems to cheer him up a bit. I wonder why the new president, Mr Trump does not like us. I often feel sad and when I do I pray that we will all be reunited with our parents one day soon. I have made friends with one of the boys that is in my cage and we play. We also help the small boy that was punished by the guards for messing himself. Me and my new friend have agreed to be the protector of the little boy. It is getting colder now, and the nights especially are very cold. We have not been given warmer blankets or clothing. We try to sleep closer so we can get warmer but that doesn’t seem to help. The food we get to eat does not taste very nice, but we are so hungry that we will eat anything. Some of the older boys try to bully the smaller ones into giving them so of their food. Some of the guards are nice to us but some of them are really mean and can be quite cruel.
Hopefully we can be reunited with our parents very soon.
Before May 2018 local officials prosecuted 20 – 30 cases a day, it is almost 200 a day now.