(SACRAMENTO) – Today, House Resolution 51 by Majority Leader V. Manuel Pérez calling for the humane treatment of the displaced Central American children seeking refuge in California was approved on the Assembly Floor.
“In putting forward this resolution, my intention has been to spur compassion and a sense of responsibility toward people caught up in a desperate situation not of their making,” explained Pérez.
“At the same time, in the absence of federal immigration reform to guide our response, this resolution makes an affirmative statement that we as a state must uphold a basic standard of fair treatment, ensuring these displaced children have access to due process protections under the law.”
HR 51 states that Californians have a civic responsibility toward the immigrants seeking refuge in the United States and to ensure that they are afforded due process and protection under the law.
It also makes a number of declarations, calling for state and federal efforts to promote stability, economic development, education, and the rule of law in these sending countries as a means to improve public safety and curtail mass migration.
The resolution passed on a voice vote earlier today. It now advances to the Secretary of State for chaptering.
Last month, Pérez travelled with five other legislators to the Central American countries of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Panama, where they discussed immigration, among a number of issues.
Following that, Pérez was in Mexico City with Governor Brown and other legislators on a trade and investment mission, also discussing immigration policy and border infrastructure.
Pérez has also toured border patrol facilities in Imperial County where many of the displaced families were held when they were re-routed from Murrieta after federal transports were blocked by protestors.
Since October 2013, more than 52,000 children traveling from Central America have been apprehended at the Mexico-United States border. It is anticipated that a total of 90,000 children will be detained at the border by the end of September of 2014.