Scattered across New York City on Wednesday were around 20 cages with what appeared to be a child inside, sobbing. They were reminiscent of the U.S. border facilities, where migrants who tried to cross without legal documentation now sleep in cramped, fenced-in areas under foil blankets.
The children inside these New York City cages aren’t real — but they are intended to evoke the same emotions as the children.
The cages are art installations, an idea launched by ad agency Badger & Winters for a nonprofit advocacy group, Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services (RAICES).
Their #NoKidsInCages campaign immediately drew attention with the chain-link cages, which were placed in front of various landmarks around Manhattan and Brooklyn. Not only did each cage have a model of a child inside, they also emitted an eerie audio recording of a crying child that was actually smuggled out of a detention center, according to Badger & Winters’ press release.