It is with warm regards that we are celebrating Immigration Law Center of Minnesota who has been selected as the Minnesota School Social Workers Association 2018 Friend of School Social Work. As an organization dedicated to the social and emotional growth of children and as professionals with the ethical responsibility to advocate for children and their families, the Minnesota School Social Workers Association wanted to thank the staff and Board of the Immigrant Law Center of Minnesota for their unwavering advocacy and commitment to ensure social justice for immigrants and refugees. We were also honored to have Lenore Millibergity present at our Day on the Hill in May 2018. Her expertise provided essential professional education for our members.
School social workers have a long history working with immigrant children and families, ensuring their success and integration into American society. As school social workers, we also understand the long term effects of adverse childhood events. When President Trump decided to end DACA last September as well as the Trump administration’s policy of separating children from their parents at the border, our association in alignment with SSWAA condemned these practices as being cruel and inhumane resulting in long-term damaging effects on the children, families, and our society as a whole. In our work, we see the impact that these policies and practices have on the students and families we serve in our school communities. We believe that as a nation, it is our duty to uphold our commitment to ensuring the ethical treatment and protection of ALL children. MSSWA and SSWAA stood in opposition engaging our members to speak out condemning the “Zero Tolerance” Policy and the criminal prosecution of unauthorized migrants and asylum seekers because it not only goes against the values of our profession, but diminishes our sense of ethics, social justice, and humanity as a nation. As an organization along with the School Social Work Association of America, we have also been advocating for legislation that will preserve the DACA program and make it permanent through a bipartisan Dream Act. MSSWA members have relied on the services and support that Immigrant Law Center of MN consistently provides to not only ensure that we can best serve our immigrant and refugee families but to assist us in our advocacy work on a state and national level. It is for these reasons that MSSWA wanted to say thank you to everyone involved with the Immigrant Law Center of Minnesota.