Kansas officials ask Yoder to seek end of family separations at US border
Dozens of elected officials in Rep. Kevin Yoder's congressional district in Kansas are pushing him to demand an end to the forced separation of families caught crossing the U.S. border illegally.
Democratic state Rep. Jarrod Ousley of Merriam and Republican state Rep. Linda Gallagher of Lenexa delivered a letter Wednesday to Yoder's office in Overland Park.
The letter urged Yoder to demand that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security stop separating families.
“The separation of children from their parents to deter asylum seekers will have significant long lasting consequences for the safety, health, development, and well-being of children, and violates well established international law protecting asylum seekers, and the constitutional right to due process,” the letter states.
The GOP congressman is chairman of a House Appropriations homeland security subcommittee.
Yoder said in a statement that he is "heartbroken" by the separations and is working to find a solution.
Most of the more than 60 people who signed the letter are state lawmakers or local officials in the 3rd Congressional District in the Kansas City area.
Elected officials from Shawnee who signed the letter include Councilmembers Lindsey Constance, Matt Zimmerman, Jim Neighbor, Mickey Sandifer, Justin Adrian and Rep. Cindy Neighbor. Shawnee Mayor Michelle Distler and Ed Eilert, Chairman of the Johnson County Board of Commissioners, also signed it.
If you are a constituent of Rep. Yoder, and you would like to sign a petition as a constituent you may do so here.
-Dispatch news editor Jennifer Bhargava contributed to this report.