National Migration Week 2018

Posted on January 02, 2018 in: General News

JANUARY 7 – 14, 2018

For nearly a half century, the Catholic Church in the United States has celebrated National Migration Week, which is an opportunity for the Church to reflect on the circumstances confronting migrants, which includes immigrants, refugees, children and victims of human trafficking. Each of our families has a migration story, some recent and others in the distant past. Regardless of where we are and where we came from we remain part of the human family and are called to live in solidarity with one another.

The Catholic Bishops and the Catholic Church support humane immigration reform. We must reform our broken system that separates families and denies due process.
USCCB (the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops) supports protection, humanitarian support and durable solutions for refugees and other forcibly displaced people. USCCB’s Migration and Refugee Services in collaboration with local Catholic Charities across the nation form the largest private, U.S. refugee resettlement network, and has helped welcome and resettle over one million refugees since 1975.

The U.S. should provide child welfare protection, refugee protection and safe, humane durable solutions for unaccompanied children arriving at our borders without their parent or legal guardian. Most are fleeing grave, life-threatening violence and gang recruitment and are seeking to reunify with family in the U.S.
The U.S. should fix our broken immigration system instead of taking an enforcement-only approach to dealing with irregular migration. Due to mandatory detention laws, people who are not flight risks or risks to national security and are extremely vulnerable, are being held unnecessarily in detention. Alternatives to detention exist that are more humane, more cost-effective and more consistent with American values.

The U.S. must not only hold human traffickers accountable for their crimes, but also work to prevent trafficking and provide protection and healing to trafficking victims. The Catholic Church has long condemned trafficking as an affront to human dignity. The two largest trafficking cases in the U.S. involved labor trafficking – in Guam and on Long Island.

“The Catholic story in America is a story of immigrants…this is who we are.”
Bishop Elizondo, Chair, USCCB Committee on Migration.