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Hundreds Gather in Springfield Wednesday to Protest Zero Tolerance Immigration Policy

Hours before President Donald Trump said he’ll stop separating families at the border, a couple of hundred protesters stood along the south side of E. Sunshine, starting in front of U.S. Senator Roy Blunt’s office.

The event was organized by Faith Voices of Southwest Missouri and Families Belong Together, a coalition of local organizations and faith leaders.

Jeremy Sullivan used his lunch break to protest the separation of children from their parents.

"I feel being not in a border state maybe a little bit helpless, but our senator can actually do something about it, so I think it's important that we come out and let Senator Blunt know  that we dont' think that this is right," he said.  "I've adopted four kiddos, and I believe that kids need to be with their families and they need to be with those that they're loved, and every minute that they're kept away detained, we're causing a drama that it's going to take them years to overcome."

Mary Hilsabeck-Huber held a sign that read “By the grace of God, you were born in the U.S.A.  They were not so lucky.

"We didn't do anything to deserve the privileges that we have.  We were born here by the grace of God, and I think that it's absolutely abhorrent  that we are taking children from parents who have fled violence that we can't even imagine," she said.

She wants to send the message to lawmakers that they need to stop blaming each other and do something to change things.

Cindy Slimp went to the protest because she feels “America is in a really horrible place right now in regards to how we care for one another.  We just seem to be lacking so much compassion," she said.  "And it is absolutely inhumane to be locking children up separate from their families.  I wonder who many of these children will never see their parents again?  It's just heartbreaking."

President Trump Wednesday signed an executive order ending his policy of separating migrant children from their families at the border.  But he says his policy of zero tolerance to prosecute all illegal immigrants will continue.  And it’s not clear what will happen to the more than 2,000 children who have already been placed in detention facilities.