Statement of APA President Regarding the Traumatic Effects of Separating Immigrant Families
Following is the statement of APA President Jessica Henderson Daniel, PhD, regarding the deleterious impact on the health and well-being of children and families who are separated as they seek to enter the United States without proper documentation:
“The administration’s policy of separating children from their families as they attempt to cross into the United States without documentation is not only needless and cruel, it threatens the mental and physical health of both the children and their caregivers. Psychological research shows that immigrants experience unique stressors related to the conditions that led them to flee their home countries in the first place. The longer that children and parents are separated, the greater the reported symptoms of anxiety and depression for the children. Negative outcomes for children include psychological distress, academic difficulties and disruptions in their development.
“The American Psychological Association calls on the administration to rescind this policy and keep immigrant families intact. We support practical, humane immigration policies that consider the needs of immigrants, and particularly immigrant families. We must adopt policies that take into account what we know about the harmful, long-term psychological effects of separation on children and their families. This is not an acceptable policy to counter unlawful immigration.”
MPA stands with APA on this important issue.
Help is just a click away!
With the recent loss of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain due to suicide, we wanted to share resources for you or someone close to you that may be struggling.
- National Suicide Hotline: 1-800-SUICIDE (784-2433) or 1-800-273-TALK (273-8255) (24/7)
- Maryland Suicide/Crisis Hotline:1-800-422-0009 (24/7) 410-531-5086 TDD (24/7)
- Lifeline Chat: 24/7 via web chat.
- APA article on Struggling with thoughts of Suicide?
MPA's Committment to Justice and Advocacy
The Maryland Psychological Association Board of Directors acknowledges the many colleagues who have been and/or have encountered clients, students, or colleagues who have been profoundly affected by the divisive events of the last several months in this country. The APA Code of Ethics states that we should work to, "minimize harm wherever it is unforeseeable and unavoidable". As psychologists, we not only advocate for the use of psychological science for the creation of policies that promote public good - particularly for those who, due to their identities, are disenfranchised and marginalized - but we do not stand idly by while science is misused or ignored to further marginalize disenfranchised groups. Click here for full statement.