Dolores Huerta calls on McCarthy for family reunification

Posted at 8:36 PM, Jun 27, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-27 23:36:15-04

Just a day after civil rights activist Dolores Huerta returned from Tequillo, Texas -- she reflects on her experience there. 

"I was with a mother who was sobbing uncontrollably because she had no idea where her daughter was, she had been separated from her 7-year-old daughter and to this moment she doesn't know where he daughter is at," Huerta said. 

Huerta and some Kern County residents held a protest outside Congressman Kevin McCarthy's office Wednesday morning. 

Huerta was calling on community members to join her in a 24-hour fast for the more than 24,000 children that have been separated at the border. 

"We know that if we send out a spiritual offering, that it will reach the hearts and the minds of the people we are trying to reach," Huerta said. 

A silent form of protest that she hopes sends a message to local leaders that resinates. 

"We need Kevin to step up to the plate. If he wants to be speaker and we know he has aspirations to be speaker of the house, well, show some leadership. Show us some leadership! We are looking at you, Kevin," Huerta said. 

Bakersfield resident Karla Aparicio joined Huerta in her protest today. 

"He needs to be aware of who he is representing here in Kern County, there are a bunch of immigrants, there are a bunch of Latinos here in California who are being directly affected and there needs to be action taken," Aparicio said. 

Even though Rep. McCarthy supports more hard line immigration reform, he was outspoken about the controversial policy at the border last week. 

"I was to be very clear, we do not support the separation of children and families being broken apart," McCarthy said. 

Huerta's rally was taking place at the same time the Republican immigration bill failed in the House. 

McCarthy and Rep. David Valadao both voted yes on the compromise immigration bill, despite an overwhelming majority of Republicans opposing it. 

Valadao released a statement saying: "It is clear the only way to implement comprehensive reform legislation is if Republicans and Democrats put aside political objectives and work together to repair our broken system."

An action Huerta says is on the Republicans. 

"They are in control of the Congress, the Republicans, they have the power to do this and to stop all of the suffering of all these families," Huerta said. 

As of now, confusion still remains at the border, with no concrete solution for family reunification, driving Huerta and others to stand in solidarity for families still searching for each other. 

"These lives are being changed and these families are being separated, like to think of that, think of use in that situation. What would we do? You know, we would like to have some people rallying behind us, right? So I think it is important to rally behind them."