New York City Congressman José Serrano, of the Bronx, called policies that deport parents and place their citizen children in foster care “un-American” and “deeply troubling.” Serrano’s comments came after he read that an estimated 5,100 U.S. born children are currently in foster care because their parents have been deported in a groundbreaking new report released on Wednesday by publisher the Applied Research Center. 

“An immigration policy that separates children from their parents is inhumane and un-American, and should not be an outcome of our immigration policy,” Serrano wrote in a press release. “Keeping families united is a basic human right, and a fundamental principle in our nation. I am deeply troubled that our nation is implementing policies which could end up permanently separating families and causing children to end up in adoption proceedings.”

“When I introduced the Child Citizen Protection Act for the first time several years ago, I warned that a rigid deportation policy would end up separating children from their parents for no good reason. Today we have learned that that dire prediction is turning out to be true.”

“Today I call on DHS Secretary Napolitano to immediately halt and review all deportation proceedings where a child is being held by child protective services as a result of ICE actions. This indiscriminate and harmful policy outcome is wrong, and it must end immediately. A parent should never lose their child simply because of non-criminal deportation proceedings.”