"Let our children go! Immigrant rights supporters chanted in front of the Los Angeles Metropolitan Detention Center.
The children they refer to are immigrant children from Central American countries that have been crossing across the US Mexico border, following rumors they would not be deported by the Homeland Security. Thousands of kids are now being packed into detention centers that are not equipped to handle that many people. Many have notes with the names of parents and other family members al across the United States.
"It is shameful that these children are being held like criminals" says one protester who does not want her name used. Rally organizer Keith James believes the detentions are another example of what he described as a massive program to criminalize immigrants and minorities.
At the same time, in Washington, the Federal Administration for Children and Families announced that agencies overseeing the shelter programs for migrant children will resume fingerprinting anyone, other than parents, stepping forward to care for the kids.
Parents are still exempt; the fear being that since many are here illegally, some would not show up to get their children of they had to be fingerprinted.
"Go ahead and fingerprint me!", says Elva Marroquin, the mother of two of those children who are in one of the packed detention centers in Texas. As you may have seen in our coverage, the Rialto woman and her husband, Angel, have yet to find out exactly where their kids are, or when they can go get them. Their 10-year-old son, Angel, and 7-year-old daughter, Dulce, called their parents about ten days ago, saying they were among the detained. They complained of sleeping on the floor, with nothing but a blanket. A homeland security officer got on the phone, and told Elva she had to wait for someone from social services to call her before she could get her kids. She is still waiting for that call.