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A Special Statement on the Current Immigration Border Crisis

Monsignor Sullivan with Migrant Child
Monsignor Sullivan with a child Catholic Charities New York reunited
following the separation from his family at the U.S. Border

by Monsignor Kevin Sullivan, Executive Director, Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of New York

The surging number of adults, children and families fleeing violence, extortion and poverty from Central America is creating a crisis at our southern border. This calls for immediate and strong humanitarian attention.

Our response cannot be harsh or absent concern for human dignity, particularly that of children.  Knee-jerk reactions and threats that are not thoroughly considered are not worthy of our great nation.

I have accompanied teams of New York Catholic Charites staff to support local Catholic Charities agencies at the border in the southwest. We have seen the faces of this crisis.

When these families and children come to New York, Catholic Charities attorneys, child care counselors and other human service professionals provide respectful and compassionate legal and social service assistance that ensures basic human dignity, and a path to a better future. Our experience, over and over again, is that those immigrants and refugees who settle in New York enrich, revitalize, and create a better New York.

The heart of this crisis at our southern border is our nation’s decades old inability to find a comprehensive resolution that provides for secure borders, fair and generous legal policies that foster family unity and authorization for decent work, and a way for the millions of undocumented to remedy their situation, including a way to earn a path toward citizenship.

As we have done for more than a century Catholic Charities commits, anew, our energy, resources and prayers, to being a valued partner to address this current crisis for immigrants seeking safety and opportunity in the United States.