Statement Regarding Separation of Children
and Parents During the Immigration Process
For nearly 40 years the National Court Appointed Special Advocate Association (National
CASA) has advocated for the best interests of children who have experienced abuse or
neglect. One of our guiding principles is that children are better off when they remain
with their families of origin if safely possible.
We also know the long-term effects of trauma that children experience when they are
separated from their parents, which are most often detrimental to their well-being and
can have long-term negative impact.
While CASA programs and volunteers work in family or juvenile court systems, not the
federal court system, we support best-interest advocacy for all children. We have been
deeply concerned about the family separations at the Southwest border and thank those
who have spoken out on behalf of these children. We join with these voices.
If children involved in immigration proceedings become involved in family or juvenile
court, we urge the appointment of a CASA/GAL volunteer to advocate for the child's best
interest and help the court make the most well-informed decision in these tremendously
We ask our nation's legislators to carefully consider the impacts on children when they
address immigration legislation so that no child is subjected to further trauma.