Since its inception, the Annie E. Casey Foundation has been committed to ensuring all kids — no matter their background — have a strong family and community that provide the love and support they need to thrive.
Simply put, children belong in families, not facilities. Families play a central role in kids’ lives and serve as a source of strength and support in difficult times. Not having that kind of support can derail a child’s future and undermine well-being. We have long partnered with states and community leaders to reduce the trauma of separation for children involved in child welfare systems.
Because of the importance of family and safety for all kids — and the devastating toll of separation on their health and development — we have previously expressed concerns about the treatment of children who are the sons and daughters of immigrants or immigrants themselves, as well as their parents. Our 2017 Race for Results report, which provided detailed data on children by race and ethnicity, highlighted the significant barriers facing kids in immigrant families to help the public and policymakers better understand the issues and what is at stake for the nation’s future.
Over the past few years, the Foundation has supported the work of national and state grantees to protect these children and their families. A few examples:
- Several grantees have worked to raise public awareness of the crisis at the border and promote humanitarian solutions. They’ve also strived to preserve the rights of children and families who face potential raids in their cities and to support an accurate census count, opposing the addition of a citizenship question that would likely dampen participation.
- A coalition of hundreds of organizations, Protecting Immigrant Families, Advancing Our Futures, has led efforts to challenge a proposed federal rule that would deny access to public services, such as food and housing assistance, for immigrants and their families.
- The Families Belong Together campaign has organized hundreds of rallies calling for an end to immigration policies that harm kids, including family separation and detention. The coalition is focused on addressing the inhumane conditions and child abuse that has occurred at the border.
The Foundation will continue to support ongoing efforts to ensure every child and family in America are treated with the humanity and fairness that all people deserve — and to keep families together in the first place.