Remember when Hillary Clinton said you have to send refugee children back to send a message? Turns out that deterrence strategy comes at a high human cost. Who woulda thunkit?

Via The American Immigration Counsel:

Yet, a report released today by the American Immigration Council reveals that such a strategy has an extremely high human cost.
Between February and May, 2016, the American Immigration Council interviewed eight individuals who were deported (or whose partners were deported) from the United States after being detained in family detention facilities. These women (or in two of the cases, their partners) shared their experiences—both describing what has happened to them and their children since returning to their country and recounting the detention and deportation process from the United States.

First-hand accounts from Central American women and their family members interviewed for this project reveal the dangerous and bleak circumstances of life these women and their children faced upon return to their home countries, as well as serious problems in the deportation process. The testimonies describe how women are living in hiding, fear for their own and their children’s lives, have minimal protection options, and suffer the consequences of state weakness and inability to ensure their safety in the Northern Triangle. The stories presented in the report are those of a fraction of the women and children who navigate a formidable emigration-detention-deportation process in their pursuit of safety. The process and systems through which they passed only contribute to the trauma, violence, and desolation that many Central American families already endured in their home country.

Day after day, women and children seeking protection in the United States are sent back to the Northern Triangle of Central America (Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador), and, consequently, forced to face the same dire conditions that they fled—or worse. The Northern Triangle is one of the most dangerous regions in the world and in recent years the influence of complex organized criminal groups has grown in the region, driving up murder rates, gender-based violence, and other forms of serious harm. It is also a region devastated by poverty and food insecurity. This precarious socioeconomic context, in turn, contributes to a vicious circle of socio-economic exclusion and violence. As has been previously documented, poverty and inequality are likely to increase this region’s vulnerability to certain types of crime (e.g., gang activity).

Click here to read the report.