GOOD

Public Outcry Against Family Separation Is Working

As the public speaks out against these endeavors, the government has been forced to address the effects of their state-sponsored child detention policies.

Members of a Guatemalan immigrant family who tried to illegally cross to the United States arrive at the Air Force base in Guatemala City after being deported on July 10, 2018. Photo by Orlando Estrada/AFP/Getty Images.

The Trump administration missed a crucial deadline for family reunification this week.


On June 26, a federal judge ordered the government to reunite children under age 5 who had been separated from their parents after showing up at the border. The administration identified 75 children who were eligible, but the government didn’t manage to bring all of them back to their families.

Trump officials expected 34 families to be reunited, but 17 still had pending background checks. 10 parents were in criminal custody and could be reunified with their children once released.

Yet the government couldn’t find the parents of 20 of the children that were younger than 5. 12 had been deported, and eight were released in the United States. One parent and child who were separated might both be U.S. citizens. Officials are still trying to find the parent.

This inefficient process doesn’t bode well for a deadline that’s coming up in two weeks, when the rest of the estimated 3,000 children who were separated must be reunited with their parents, according to the court’s demands.

Dozens of women and their children, many fleeing poverty and violence in Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador, arrive at a bus station following release from Customs and Border Protection on June 22, 2018. Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images.

An exodus

Meanwhile, court files documenting Trump’s family separation policy have been released as part of the State of Washington, et. al. v. Donald Trump lawsuit.

The documents show the cruelty of the policy that punishes people who are already fleeing hardship.

One immigrant mother who escaped domestic abuse in Guatemala said that officials told her that she would never see her daughter again. “I cannot express the pain and fear I felt at that point,” she said according to the documents.

Another mother recalls ICE officials telling her, “‘Don’t you know that we hate you people? We don’t want you in our country.’”

And a BuzzFeed investigation reveals inhumane treatment of pregnant women who are detained at the border, opening with a woman who miscarried while in detention. Officials refused to help her. “‘An official arrived and they said it was not a hospital and they weren’t doctors,’” she told BuzzFeed.

A man being held inside the Metropolitan Detention Center, which houses detained immigrants, responds to calls of encouragement from demonstrators on the street below on June 30, 2018, in Los Angeles. Photo by David McNew/Getty Images.

Effective outcry

Because of intrepid investigative reporting, the public is becoming aware of the harm the Trump administration has caused by its harsh immigration policies. As the public stands up to speak out against these endeavors, the administration has also been forced to walk back their family separation policy. This outcry has ranged from people informally protesting Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen as she ate at a Mexican restaurant to the massive Families Belong Together marches that on took place June 30.

Judicial advocates are also putting in the work. It’s because of various lawsuits that we know about the callousness which family separation is being carried out and that this reunification is happening in the first place.

And these protests are only the beginning of the collective actions that push back against these policies that tear families apart.

Articles

The healthcare systems in the United States and the United Kingdom couldn't be more different.

The UK's National Health Service is the largest government-run healthcare system in the world and the US's is largest private sector system.

Almost all essential health services in the UK are free, whereas in America cost can vary wildly based on insurance, co pays and what the hospitals and physicians choose to charge.

A medical bill in the US

One of the largest differences is cost. The average person in the UK spends £2,989 ($3915) per year on healthcare (most of which is collected through taxes), whereas the average American spends around $10,739 a year.

So Americans should obviously be getting better care, right? Well, the average life expectancy in the UK is higher and infant mortality rate is lower than that in the US.

RELATED: The World Health Organization declares war on the out of control price of insulin

Plus, in the U.S., only 84% of people are covered by private insurance, Medicare or Medicaid. Sixteen percent of the population are forced to pay out of pocket.

In the UK, everyone is covered unless they are visiting the country or an undocumented resident.

Prescription drugs can cost Americans an arm and a leg, but in the UK, prescriptions or either free or capped at £8.60 ($11.27).

via Wikimedia Commons

The one drawback to the NHS system is responsiveness. In the UK people tend to wait longer for inessential surgeries, doctor's appointments, and in emergency rooms. Whereas, the US is ranked as the most responsive country in the world.

RELATED: Alarmingly high insulin prices are forcing Americans to flock to Canada to buy the drug

The New York Times printed a fair evaluation of the UK's system:

The service is known for its simplicity: It is free at the point of use to anyone who needs it. Paperwork is minimal, and most patients never see a bill. … No one needs to delay medical treatment until he or she can afford it, and virtually everyone is covered. …

According to data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the United States spent 17.2 percent of its economic output on health care in 2016, compared with 9.7 percent in Britain. Yet Britain has a higher life expectancy at birth and lower infant mortality.

Citizens in each country have an interesting perspective on each other's healthcare systems. UK citizens think it's inhumane for Americans have to pay through the nose when they're sick or injured. While Americans are skeptical of socialist medicine.

A reporter from Politics Joe hit the streets of London and asked everyday people what they think Americans pay for healthcare and they were completely shocked.

Health

Bans on plastic bags and straws can only go so far. Using disposable products, like grabbing a plastic fork when you're on the go, can be incredibly convenient. But these items also contribute to our growing plastic problem.

Fortunately, you can cut down on the amount of waste you produce by cutting down on disposable products. And even more fortunately, there are sustainable (and cute) replacements that won't damage the environment.

Coconut bowls


Cocostation

Who says sustainable can't also be stylish? These cute coconut bowls were handmade using reclaimed coconuts, making each piece one of a kind. Not only are they organic and biodegradable, but they're also durable, in case your dinner parties tend to get out of hand. The matching ebony wood spoons were polished with the same coconut oil as the bowls.

Cocostation Set of 2 Vietnamese Coconut Bowls and Spoons, $14.99; at Amazon

Solar powered phone charger

Dizaul

Why spend time looking around for an outlet when you can just harness the power of the sun? This solar powered phone charger will make sure your phone never dies as long as you can bask in the sun's rays. As an added bonus, this charger was made using eco-friendly silicone rubber. It's win-win all around.

Dizaul Solar Charger, 5000mAh Portable Solar Power Bank, $19.95; at Amazon, $19.95; at Amazon

Herb garden kit

Planter Pro

Put some green in your life with this herb planter. The kit comes with everything you need to get a garden growing, including a moisture meter that helps you determine if your herbs are getting the right amount of food to flourish. All the seeds included are certified to be non-GMO and non-hybrids, meaning you can have fresh, organic herbs right at your fingertips.

Planter Pro's Herb Garden Cedar Planter, $39.00; at Amazonedar Planter, $39.00; at Amazon

Reusable Keurig cups

K & J

Keurig cups are convenient, but they also create a ton of plastic waste. These Keurig-compatible plastic cups are an easy way to cut down on the amount of trash you create without cutting down on your caffeine. Additionally, you won't have to keep on buying K Cups, which means you'll be saving money and the environment.

K&J Reusable Filter Cups, $8.95 for a set of 4,; at Amazon

Low-flow shower head

Speakman

Low-flow water fixtures can cut down your water consumption, which saves you money while also saving one of the Earth's resources. This shower head was designed with a lighter flow in mind, which means you'll be able to cut down on water usage without feeling like you're cutting down on your shower.

Speakman Low Flow Shower Head, $14.58; at Amazon

Bamboo safety razor

Zomchi

Instead of throwing away a disposable razor every time you shave, invest in an eco-friendly, reusable one. This unisex shaver isn't just sustainable, it's also sharp-looking, which means it would make a great gift for the holidays.

Zomchi Safety Razor, $16.99; at Amazon

The Planet
Instagram / Leonardo DiCaprio

This August, the world watched as the Amazon burned. There were 30,901 individual fires that lapped at the largest rainforest in the world. While fires can occur in the dry season due to natural factors, like lightning strikes, it is believed that the widespread fires were started by loggers and farmers to clear land. Brazil's president, Jair Bolsonaro, cites a different cause: the actor Leonardo DiCaprio.

DiCaprio wasn't accused of hanging out in the rainforest with a box of matches, however President Bolsonaro did accuse the actor of funding nonprofit organizations that allegedly set fires to raise donations.

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The Planet