Pajama Clothesline Project, June 9, 2019, International Children’s Day
Ten thousand or more migrant children remain separated from their parents or families in government detention camps or centers. Please join us in opposing this injustice. We invite you to participate in this demonstration by either replicating the idea in your own community and/or donating pajamas to our National Project.
As a statement of the nation’s concern, hundreds of pairs of children’s pajamas will be hung on clotheslines on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., on International Children’s Day, June 9, 2019.
The project grew out of an idea from Maryland high school student Alex Kohn, who attended an April 2018 conference held by the Unitarian Universalists United Nations Office, “A Just Migration for All.” After Alex and his friends got home, they hung up children’s pajamas at their own Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Columbia, Maryland, to call attention to the fact that the government is violating a decades‐old, court‐ approved agreement that migrant children should not be detained for more than 20 days and must be released to their parents or a family member.
“No child should go to bed without a parent or loved one to tuck them in at night,” Alex declared. His minister, the Rev. Paige Getty, signaled the congregation’s support with a sermon on “Just Migration for All.”
Indivisible Howard County, part of a nationwide progressive movement to preserve American democracy, decided to elevate the pajama project to national attention with a planned artistic display on the National Mall. The goal of the project is to raise awareness of the lost, separated and detained children held by the Department of Health and Human Services, Customs and Border Control.
The trauma of these children should be stopped immediately, and they should be reunited with their families.
Join our effort or support one of your own in your own community. We received the permit for our project on the National Mall June 9th between 12th and 14th Streets, NW, Washington, D.C. The plan calls for up to 10 rows of clotheslines, each 100 feet long. The impact of hundreds of pajamas hanging together, with large banners proclaiming, “Where Are the Children?” and “Don’t Separate Families,” will be powerful.
The more pajamas we can gather, the more rows we can add. Afterward, we’ll offer this project as a traveling display.
In addition, we’d ask interested individuals or groups in other communities throughout the United States to consider organizing similar pajama displays themselves. Hang children’s pajamas on clotheslines; send us a photo, with the sponsors and organizers.