In the three weeks since Aylan’s photo circulated around the world, little has changed for refugees seeking safe passage from conflict.
While Obama's announcement is a welcome effort to bring undocumented immigrants “out of the shadows,” advocates remain deeply concerned over how the executive action will affect asylum seekers, unaccompanied children, and other vulnerable groups.
Although Maria is just 13-years-old, she already suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder and major depression, reports Dr. Carol Kessler, a child psychiatrist and member of the Asylum Network at PHR. Originally from El Salvador, Maria fled to the United States after a gang member attempted to rape her and force her to join his gang.
With recently re-interpreted guidelines for asylum seekers, the United States is at risk of summarily deporting immigrants back to their home countries, where they may face dangerous situations — and sometimes death — in exchange for political expediency.
Photos and stories of doctors working in conflict and under other forms of duress are compelling for many reasons. Their bravery and commitment to their patients is admirable, and attacks against those caring for others are unjustifiable in any conflict.