EL PASO, Texas -- The Border Network for Human Rights held their annual “Hugs Not Walls” event in the middle of the Rio Grande on the U.S./Mexico border on Saturday.
300 families came together to embrace each other for the first time in years.
The event was postponed back in May, a first for the immigration advocacy group.
Executive director of the Border Network of Human Rights, Fernando Garcia said political conditions made it difficult.
“I think we went through two years of very aggressive policy towards families and children in that context we could not have that event,” Garcia said. “We tried I think they were possibilities for dialogue back then we couldn’t really sit down to nail a strategy for an event.”
Garcia also said it was difficult to communicate the purpose of the event.
“There were changes in Border Patrol,” Garcia said. “Border Patrol now recognizes that we had been working for many many years to create an environment in dialogue and I think that’s what you are seeing today.”
Families had a moment Saturday morning that they'll appreciate for a long time. U.S. residents in blue, Mexican residents in white.
“They’re going to embrace as an act of love. They’re going to embrace an act of hope.”
This was the 7th time the Border Network of Human Rights has hosted this event.