BROWNSVILLE, Texas – A pen and paper have been a form of communication for immigrant families separated following the Trump administration’s implementation of its “zero tolerance policy.”
An immigration attorney from Virginia has not only been representing some of the families in the Rio Grande Valley but also helping them send letters to their children.
Eileen Blessinger said she has collected more than 30 letters written by parents being kept in the Port Isabel Detention Center.
Blessinger shared one of the letters from a father who told his daughter that he loved her and not to lose faith.
“Hi, how are you, my beautiful daughter. I hope you are doing well alongside all the other children. I miss you very much. I love you. I’m going to see you soon. God will make sure that we are together again,” Blessinger read.
“And know that we are going to be together again as father and child. As you are my daughter and I love you very much. I hope God blesses you today and always,” the letter said.
Blessinger said she and her five colleagues have been meeting with over 200 men and women who have been separated from their children.
“The emotional toll that is taking on everyone is really extreme; not just the parents but the children as well,” Blessinger said. “Some of these children when they spoke with their parents, they were saying, ‘You don’t love me. Why did you leave?’”
Blessinger said the issue is one of the hardest things she’s ever done.
On July 12, the Trump administration said 57 children under 5 years old had been reunited with their families but others were not eligible for reunification.
U.S. District Judge Dana Sabraw imposed a series of deadlines for the administration to reunite hundreds of children.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is working to meet Thursday’s deadline of reunifying the remaining children between the ages of 5 and 17.