The Rapidian

Protesters demand Bethany Christian Services end contract after accepting separated children from U.S. border

On Wednesday June 20, 2018 protestors gathered, demanding that Bethany end their federal contract with the Office of Refugees until ICE stops separating families.

/John Rothwell

/John Rothwell

A small group of protesters gathered on the sidewalk across from Bethany Christian Services on Wednesday, June 20, 2018 demanding that Bethany end their federal contract with the Office of Refugees until ICE at least stops separating families. 

Bethany Christian is currently assisting displaced children that have been separated from their families at the Southern United States Border.

“The board at Bethany Christian needs to end the contract,” said protest organizer Katy Steele Barone. “The system is not meant for kids who are purposely taken away from their parents, this system is meant to find homes for those who do not have parents.” 

According to the their website, Bethany Christian Services is a “global nonprofit organization that brings families together and keeps families together. Strengthening families for the well-being of children is our top priority. Our services include adoption, foster care, and pregnancy counseling. We also provide counseling to families, assist refugees and immigrants resettling in the U.S., and partner with several international countries to help keep families together. The work we do equips families to be the answer for children in need—as Christ intended."

Bethany put out a statement on its social media pages on Wednesday addressing the situation.

"We believe that all children belong with their families. However, in the current situation of children being separated at the border, we would prefer these children be placed temporarily in a safe and loving foster home instead of remaining in a center for an undetermined period of time," the statement reads in part.

Steele Barone added that taking children and shipping them across the country makes us a part of the problem and she doesn't want to be a part of the problem, she wants to be a part of the solution.


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