Recommendations for humane treatment of immigrants


NASW Oregon Supports Oregon’s congressional delegation condemnation of “zero tolerance” policy

Recommendations for humane treatment of immigrants

Salem, Ore. – The Oregon Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers stands with our state’s congressional delegation in condemning Trump’s “zero tolerance” policy and mass incarceration of immigrant families.

As a profession, social workers are currently and should continue to be on the front line fighting for the humane treatment of families and the best interests of children, ensuring legal rights are protected at every stage of the migration / refugee process.

NASW joins with major national child welfare and immigration advocacy organizations for coherency in immigration policies to avoid long-term family separations that result in early childhood trauma. Some recommendations are as follows:

  • Arrest procedures that will determine whether apprehended individuals have children or other dependents, and information sharing so families can located detained parents
  • Appointing a DHS liaison officer charged with facilitating cases involving child welfare agencies and detained parents
  • Procedural reforms to ensure that cases involving parents with minor children employ noncustodial alternatives to detention when possible, and to encourage regular, meaningful contact between children and their detained parents
  • Placing families and unaccompanied children in homes, shelters, and with organizations in the community rather than locking them up in jail-like conditions in immigrant detention centers, jails, or prisons

Social workers can take action by getting involved with organizations working to end family separation. Unite Oregon, One Oregon, and Causa Oregon are all organizations that work to protect and support immigrants in Oregon. There is also a legal response network working to provide support for immigrants detained by ICE in Sheridan, Oregon.

You can join the network at this link

The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) is the largest membership organization of professional social workers in the world. NASW works to enhance the professional growth and development of its members, to create and maintain professional standards for social workers and to advance sound social policies.

The NASW Oregon Chapter is a state chapter of the NASW. It was founded in 1971 and represents social workers throughout the state of Oregon. To learn more, visit

Delmar de la Torre Stone, Executive Director, NASW Oregon Chapter