ACLU Statement on Trump’s Visit to Calexico
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 5, 2019
SAN DIEGO — Today, President Trump is visiting Calexico, Calif., in the Imperial Valley to tour a 30-foot-tall, 2.2-mile section of replacement border fence, decry what he is calling an immigration crisis and continue to pressure Congress to support construction of a wall along the southern U.S. border.
Norma Chávez-Peterson, Executive Director of the ACLU of San Diego & Imperial Counties, had this reaction:
“Since taking office, President Trump has been unrelenting in his attacks on our border communities. His administration has pursued numerous disastrous policies and practices, including forcibly separating migrant children from their families, firing tear gas on unarmed migrants, abandoning legal asylum-seeking families on our streets without food, shelter or resources, and most recently, returning the mostly Central American migrants who requested asylum protection from our government to Mexico at great risk to their health and safety. These flagrantly anti-immigrant actions make it clear that the president’s only objective is to create fear, chaos and xenophobia where none exists.
“Border communities are among the most peaceful and prosperous in our country. It’s time for President Trump to stop this extremist pandering to his base and listen to border residents – the people affected by his anti-immigrant agenda.
“To our knowledge, the president has no plans to meet with Imperial Valley residents or community leaders to hear their concerns. He has no intent to learn how his policies strain limited local resources and put lives at risk. He is unmoved by the harmful effects his threats to close the border has on businesses, families and civic life in the region.
“The ACLU believes that any public dollars proposed for building walls would be of better use modernizing our aging ports of entry used by tens of thousands of commuters on a daily basis and addressing the humanitarian disaster created by Trump administration policies designed to undermine our lawful asylum process.”