Dear Honorable Senators

Committee on the Judiciary

Subcommittee on Border Security and Immigration

United States Senate

Washington, DC 20510

Dear Honorable Senators,

On behalf of The Hive, a wellness and spirituality community that supports women as we grow in our faith and wellness, we urge you to take action to end the inhumane treatment of people in detention centers, support the Keep Families Together Act (H.R. 541 / S. 292), and speed the asylum process.

As Americans and people of faith, we believe that all humans have the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. We are daughters, sisters, mothers, grandparents, lay people, teachers, ministers, and people of various faith and spiritual backgrounds who believe in upholding the dignity and worth of every human being. We believe that to feel loved and safe are among the most basic and important of human needs.

The immigrants seeking asylum or who cross the border for other reasons are children, siblings, parents, grandparents, lay people, teachers, ministers, and all sorts of people, just like us, who seek love and safety. They are seeking the American promise of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, yet the way these immigrants are being treated at the hands of our government does not honor the American spirit. The reported conditions in the detention centers and treatment of the people within them are cruel and dangerous. The treatment of immigrants at the border denies their human dignity and has lasting, harmful effects on mind, body, and spirit.

We are compelled to speak out against our government’s response to immigration at the southern border. We are opposed to the separation of children from their parents or caretakers—it is abusive and harmful. We speak out against the prolonged detention of immigrants at detainment centers and decry the inhumanity of overcrowded detainment centers where there are multiple reports of children being malnourished, sick, and abused. We mourn the deaths of the seven children who have died in American detainment centers over the past year. Finally, we are enraged by the lack of transparency with the American public about what happens in these centers. What is happening on our border is cruel, unsafe, and inhumane. We cannot stand by as children of God in any place are being harmed, and we are horrified that this is happening in our country, under the authority of our elected leaders. We cannot stand by or remain silent. This must stop.

Your support of the Keep Families Together Act (H.R. 541 / S. 292) enables children and families to remain together, significantly reducing lifelong trauma to children. This bill must allow children to have the basic things every child needs—medical care, hygiene, protection from all forms of abuse, humane sleeping conditions, the love of a trusted caregiver, and the ability to play and learn. Furthermore, requiring border agents and officers to receive training on child trauma is crucial to the safety and wellbeing of children at the border. We ask that you not only vote in support of this bill, but to not accept any version of this bill that lacks rigorous protections for children and their basic needs. This bill must protect children in government custody.

We support an approach to the crisis at the border that allows children and families to stay together, and practices that are transparent and accountable to the American people. We believe well-vetted organizations should have the ability to donate basic necessities to the people housed in the detention centers, and to offer other types of assistance that honor their dignity. Furthermore, we believe in community supported efforts to aid and speed the process of granting asylum, which would reduce the number of people and time spent in unhealthy detainment centers.

Please join us in demanding practices that uphold the human dignity of the immigrants in detention centers at the border. Your support of the Keep Families Together Act (H.R. 541 / S. 292) is crucial.

Thank you,

The Hive

A home for wellness, spirituality and growth.

The Rev. Dr. Hillary Raining, Founder

The Rev. Michelle Bullock

Kristen Spiegel

Phyllis Drackley

Teresa Mithen Danieley

Jane Gober

Connie Fegley

Victoria Hoppes

Dorothy Shaw

Liz Wendt

Jessica Anschutz

Hanieh Razzaghi

Erika Bower

Heather Gullo

Lauren Robbins Holder

Elizabeth Wilson

Helen Svoboda-Barber

Jennifer L. Burkhardt

Katie Churchwell

Katie Gorman Sojewicz

Jennifer Lee Gamber

Kate Smith

Lucia Lloyd

Diane Faison

Kristin White

Wendy Claire Barrie

Sarah Ann Henderson

June Hardy Dorsey

Erin Bakal

Katherine Kanto Doyle

Heidi Hart-Gorman

Vanessa Miller

Sarah Tax Wilkins

Reverend Julie M. Hoplamazian

Allison Schultz

Anna Roope Carmichael

Cathy Bailey

Mary Cat Young

Paige Taylor

Kathleen Knaack

Lindsay Balance Collins

Carrie Schofield-Broadbent

Eleanor C. Hamlin

Emily Norton Ashinhurst

Robin Hoffman

Whitney Rice

Emily Mellott

Meredith Doster

Becky Drebert

Kay Drebert

Stephanie Barnes

Linda Kent McConnell

Elizabeth Daniel Zajac

Christina Stearns

Meredith Kadet Sanderson

Laura Popa

The Rev. Kimberly A. Reinholz

Dianne Stone Fussaro

Joann Schriner Saylors

Stephanie Sorge

Emily Jean Ballentine Erb

Naomi Sorrwar-Randall

Molly Wills Carnes

Natalee Hill

Jennifer Rieg Gellert

Susie Shaefer

Gina Mitchican

Kay Houck

Carolyn Bond

Christine Martocchio

Melissa Edwards Cutshall

Maddy Pessin

Debbie Filliettaz Dowling

Lexa H. Shallcross

Jeanne Hansknecht