Who's listening to the children?

We've heard a lot in the news recently about the unaccompanied migrant children from Latin America, who feel so threatened by gangs and violence at home that they make the treacherous journey to seek safety and asylum in the United States. The conditions that these children face at home is tragic; no one, let alone children, should face such day-to-day violence that they feel safer fleeing from home and country alone than staying with their families. I am distressed that when they do make it to "safety," the US government is more concerned about deporting than in protecting these vulnerable children.

But as I've followed the issue and listened to the discourse, there is a striking omission - who is listening to the children? Everyone is talking about them, but it seems that no one is talking with them. So not only are their human rights for life and security threatened; their right to be heard is being violated as well.

As a website that seeks to share voices in a global call for peace, respecting the children's right to communicate is of grave concern to CryPeace. The World Association of Christian Communicators (WACC), which is actively involved in advocating for communications rights around the world, has recently published a call to action urging that the children's right to communicate be respected. The media, governments, and civil society organisations should be talking with the children, rather than about them. This is especially true while they face security crises at home, and deportation in the United States.

As stated in the call to action, "WACC calls on its members and partners, especially those working in and for media outlets, to highlight the children's right to communicate and to name it in the coverage of their current plight in the USA. As advocates for communication rights, WACC encourages the media to restore the voices of the children directly affected and to let their views and and opinions be heard in public. In doing so, WACC affirms the universal right to freedom of expression and to the right to communicate. In this way, a more nuanced and helpful understanding of the plight of these children can emerge."

If you have the ability to share the plight of these children, would you please seek to include their voices? If you do, or have links to helpful interviews with some of these children, kindly post them in the comments. Thank you for helping their voices to be heard.

Read WACC's call to action for the children to be heard