Local Law Enforcement Officers in Texas Slam Trump's Family Separation Policy

June 18, 2018 AT 9:05 AM

Law enforcement leaders in Houston and elsewhere joined in Sunday on condemning President Donald Trump's 'zero-tolerance' immigration policy, which is leading to the separation of thousands of young children from their parents in recent weeks.

Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez said Sunday that children should not be kept in immigration detention centers and said the current situation highlights Congress' failure to pass comprehensive immigration reform.

"Separating families harms children," Gonzalez said. "To me, it's an affront to our American values."

U.S. Attorney Jeff Sessions has defended Trump's decision to prosecute unlawful immigrants as criminals by arguing the separations deter illegal immigration.

The policy has drawn increased attention as the Trump administration has announced plans to house children in a tent city in West Texas and as stories have circulated of breastfeeding children being taken from their mothers, social workers being barred by policy from hugging or comforting distraught children, or of parents being deported back to their home countries without their children.

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