For Immediate Release
August 16, 2019
Press Contact: Colleen Kennedy
Keystone Progress stands unequivocally with the Shut Down Berks Coalition
Gov. Wolf MUST issue ERO releasing immigrant families to restore trust in his administration
Harrisburg, PA - In the past week, Pennsylvanians have seen an active public relations campaign from Governor Wolf’s office, aiming to brand him as a savior of immigrants against the agenda of President Trump. Meanwhile, Governor Wolf has the power to make a real difference in the lives of countless immigrant families currently imprisoned at the Berks County Residential Center, by issuing an emergency removal order (ERO), yet he refuses to do so.
In July, psychologists who visited the detention center cited the real damage that was being caused to these children directly from their arbitrary imprisonment. WHYY reported that one of the psychologists, Anna Fisher, said “There is “no area of development that is spared by this kind of trauma. Oftentimes, this trauma is lasting, and it impacts all aspects of one’s functioning and development. Social, cognitive development, language development, attention development.” These acts of psychological violence on children are unwarranted and beneath the values of Pennsylvanians.
Keystone Progress Executive Director Dan Doubet issued the following statement in support of the coalition:
“The Shutdown Berks Coalition has led the movement to end family detention in Pennsylvania, and we stand with them and all who stand against detention of children and families. Governor Wolf seems more interested in performative, partisan declarations than in stopping the atrocities of incarceration happening right now, on his watch, in PA. He has the power to shut down the Berks detention center, and no tweet or press release condemning the president will make up for that. Governor Wolf, it’s time to lead: shut it down.”
Linked here is the full statement from the Shut Down Berks Coalition, a group of courageous activists who have our full support as they continue to advocate for the human rights of immigrant families.