Taking a Stance on Family Separation Policies

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Statement by Dean Grover C. Gilmore:

The Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences at Case Western Reserve University joins our social work colleagues at the state and national levels in expressing our deep concern over the policies that are being implemented by the Department of Justice, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and the Border Patrol regarding forcibly separating parents and children who arrive at our borders seeking refuge. This reprehensible practice is counter to the values and ethics of the social work profession, and of our School.

As a school of social work and nonprofit management, we are well aware of the impact that trauma has on individuals, families, and communities. We also know that many of the immigrant families crossing our borders are seeking refuge or asylum from atrocities and unlivable circumstances in their home countries. The practice of separating children from their families compounds their traumas, causes irreparable damage, and is a violation of human rights. In addition to the harm caused to the children and their family, these practices will have long-term consequences on our society and inevitably increase the burden to public services and taxpayers.

This practice has been condemned by multiple human rights organizations, including the United Nations, the American Civil Liberties Union, and Human Rights Watch as well as by our social work colleagues including those at the Council on Social Work Education and National Association of Social Workers. We add our voice to those of our colleagues in urging our elected officials to take action to end these abhorrent practices.

Grover C. Gilmore, Ph.D.
Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Dean in Applied Social Sciences