Two hundred or more residents from El Cerrito and nearby cities rallied to decry the horrendous treatment of children at the border. Almost one year to this date, the media exposed the Trump/Miller/Session Zero Tolerance policy of separating families at the border and placing children in separate facilities that some are now calling concentration camps. The children are now political pawns in an immigration strategy that seeks to deter families who are coming to the border for safe refuge. By limiting access to the legal port of entry, refugees and faced with spending weeks or longer in dangerous conditions at the border, or cross the border outside official entry points, thereby creating the criminalization of the refugee. Furthermore, because it is now a criminal situation, custom officials separate the children from their parents, housing them in private facilities that lack basic sanitary situations.
Speaking at the rally, Mayor of El Cerrito, Rochelle Pardue-Okimoto, once again vowed to the crowd that local police will not cooperate with the ICE, and uphold the Sanctuary City status of El Cerrito. The crowd received thunderous support from cars whizzing by San Pablo Ave., and people were spirited in the chants to both welcome immigrants, and end the private for profit camps for children.
El Cerrito Progressives also launched the Cookies Not Cages bake sale to raise funds for Unaccompanied Minors (Children) who need legal support to move out of border detention and rejoin their family members. In only two hours, organizers raised over $1,000 for the East Bay Sanctuary Covenanthttps://eastbaysanctuary.org/ for legal support. Please feel free to donate and help us meet our $10,000 goal by clicking on this link: https://www.gofundme.com/f/cookies-not-cages?sharetype=teams&member=2407628&rcid=r01-156185248197-d0636a15df874c03&pc=ot_co_campmgmt_w