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Miami Mayor Suarez To Visit Detention Facility Along Mexico Border

C.M. Guerro
Miami Herald
Miami mayor Francis Suarez will visit child detention facility in Tornillo, Texas on Thursday.

Miami mayor Francis Suarez will visit a detention facility in Tornillo, Texas on Thursday to see children who have been separated from their families after crossing the Mexico border illegally. 

The visit organized by the U.S. Conference of Mayors comes after President Trump signed an executive order on Wednesday altering his "zero toleracy policy," which called for the family separations. Suarez, a Republican, said he is "almost afraid" of what he is going to see during his visit. 

"I feel like I'm going to be traumatized," he said on Wednesday before leaving for Texas. "Being a father of two—and I just had a baby girl two months ago—the notion of being separated from my children because I'm seeking freedom in a country full of immigrants is a little shocking to my conscience." 

Pictures of children separated from their parents and audio of them wailing in detention facilities galvanized opposition to the division of families this week. Trump's executive order calls for families to be detained together, but it does not address the children who have already been taken away from their parents.  

Prior to the announcement of the order, Suarez said he planned to condemn the family separations after visiting the detention facility. 

"We're not trying to make a partisan statement," Suarez said. "What we're trying to do is see what's going on [and] verify some of the things that we've heard." 

Suarez noted that he also plans to visit detention facilities housing undocumented children in Homestead, Culter Bay and Miami Gardens. U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson and Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz were denied entry to the Homestead facility on Tuesday.