The Science Is Clear: Separating Families Has Long-Term Damaging Psychological and Health Consequences for Children, Families, and Communities

Bouza, J., Camacho-Thompson, D. E., Carlo, G., Franco, X., García Coll, C., Halgunseth, L. C., Marks, A., Livas Stein, G., Suárez-Orozco, C., & White, R. M. B.
June, 2018

From the publisher: "After the United States Department of Justice announced the “Zero Tolerance Policy for Criminal Illegal Entry,” Immigration and Custom Enforcement (ICE — an arm of the Department of Homeland Security) separated approximately 2,000 children from their parents in April and May 2018 as they approached the U.S. border. Children and parents were placed in separate facilities as they were being processed and were not told when or how they would be reunited. This policy and its consequences have raised significant concerns among researchers, child welfare advocates, policy makers, and the public, given the overwhelming scientific evidence that separation between children and parents, except in cases where there is evidence of maltreatment, is harmful to the development of children, families, and communities. Family separations occurring in the presence of other stressors, such as detention or natural disaster, only adds to their negative effects."

Available here: SRCD
Citation: Bouza, J., Camacho-Thompson, D. E., Carlo, G., Franco, X., García Coll, C., Halgunseth, L. C., . . . White, R. M. B. (2018). The science is clear: Separating families has long-term damaging psychological and health consequences for children, families, and communities. Washington, DC: Society for Research in Child Development.