Southwest Key Programs releases statement on migrant children separated from families

Posted at 4:19 PM, Jun 20, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-20 19:21:44-04

(KGTV) -- Southwest Key Programs, an organization that houses unaccompanied minors, responded Wednesday to the controversy surrounding migrant parents separated from their children.

Southwest Key runs a total of 26 facilities for unaccompanied minors in California, Arizona and Texas. Three of the centers in California are in El Cajon, Lemon Grove and San Diego.

Southwest Key issued a statement which said in part that the organization believes in keeping families together.

Read Southwest Key Programs’ full statement below:

"Southwest Key Programs does not support separating families at the border. For 30 years, our work in offering youth justice alternatives, immigrant children's shelters, and education has served to improve the lives of thousands of young people. We believe keeping families together is better for the children, parents and our communities, and we remain committed to providing compassionate care and reunification. For every child who has come through our shelter doors, we start on day one to reunite them with their parents or a family sponsor and to provide the kind of service that will help them thrive. This has been our priority for decades."

Southwest Key centers are funded by the federal Office of Refugee Resettlement, which falls under the Department of Health and Human Services.

In 2016, a report shows the organization served more than 30,000 unaccompanied minors. A majority of those children came from Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras.

RELATED: Trump reverses course, signs order to keep families together

The Department of Homeland Security said nearly 2,000 children were separated from their parents since Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the policy.

Earlier in the day Wednesday, President Trump signed an executive order that stops families from being separated at the border, though the order does little or nothing to help those already separated.