Immigration: The recipe for trauma in children
Brenda Bernachi-Aguilera
65

Hi Brenda,

I’d like to start by sating how shocked I was when Reyna Grande shared that 80% of immigrant children have been separated from their parents, at one point or another. I cannot imagine the suffering and trauma these children experienced. Furthermore, the parents made a great sacrifice because being apart from their children was probably the hardest thing they have ever done. Immigrant parents miss pivotal moments in their children’s life because they have to work, in order to provide for their families. Nonetheless, immigrants are often treated as pests, and labeled as lazy or moochers. In reality, immigrants work longer shifts than are allowed, and for less money than any other group in the nation. I want to believe that these misconceptions about immigrants are not based on evilness, but on lack of information and empathy. Oftentimes, we focus on the things that set us apart from others, instead of focusing on our similarities. As educators, we are in a position to ignite change, and we can start by teaching children about the struggles other people face, and to empathize with them.

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