Sonoma County to explore divestment from firms tied to migrant detention centers [Press Democrat]


By Tyler Silvy, July 24, 2019 for the Press Democrat

Sonoma County supervisors have agreed to look into divesting from major banks that have done business with the companies responsible for migrant detention centers along the U.S.-Mexico border, answering a weeks-long call from advocates and leaders who represent immigrant communities.

On Tuesday, they placed outside the county’s main administrative building cages complete with stuffed animals wrapped in thermal, aluminum-foil-like blankets to represent detained migrant children. It was the second-straight supervisors’ meeting during which protesters for the cause showed up on county property.

Several people, representing roughly 50 total, spoke during the public comment portion of the meeting, including immigrant advocates, health professionals, a lawyer, and an expert on children’s mental health.

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Jennifer Silverstein, an infant-family mental health specialist and social worker, urged supervisors to think back to the first time they remember being frightened as a child.

“I hope for everybody in this room that that moment was followed by an adult you love coming to take care of you,” Silverstein said. “As a trauma expert, I know the difference between a stressor we tolerate and a stressor that ruins us is the presence of a loving adult…You have the power to do something about it.” @Jennifer Silverstein

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