The CEO of cloud company Twilio Inc. has published a scathing critique of the separation of immigrant families at the border and urged other executives to do the same.
In a Medium post, chief executive Jeff Lawson said the practice violated the Geneva Convention:
‘Separating immigrant families isn’t just wrong, it’s a war crime.’
“We are punishing children for the possibility that their parents have committed a minor crime (a misdemeanor actually), or no crime at all — in the case of amnesty seekers,” Twilio’s TWLO, -2.99% Lawson wrote. “We are terrorizing people with a horror greater than losing your own life: losing your child.”
Lawson said that public-company CEOs are typically advised to avoid contentious political issues, but he believes that the practice of detaining children is “a matter of objective right and wrong” rather than a matter of politics.
He advised other executives to “consider the cost of silence.”
Some fellow tech leaders have also taken a stance on the policy, including Airbnb’s co-founders.
“Ripping children from the arms of their parents is heartless, cruel, immoral and counter to the American values of belonging,” co-founders Brian Chesky, Joe Gebbia and Nathan Blecharczyk said in a statement Monday. “The U.S. government needs to stop this injustice and reunite these families. We are a better country than this.”