WASHINGTON, D.C. — President Trump today signed a proclamation barring certain immigrants from the U.S. for at least 60 days.
The proclamation, which differs from the sweeping ban indicated in the president’s initial announcement of his intentions to “temporarily suspend immigration into the United States,” applies to those currently outside of the U.S. seeking to immigrate, including some immigrant family members of U.S. citizens.
The suspension does not apply to spouses and children under 21 of U.S. citizens, immigrants coming to work in health care professions and other jobs that help address COVID-19, EB-5 foreign investors, military members and their spouses and children, anyone whose entry is deemed to be in the national interest, and several other categories.
The following is a statement from Ali Noorani, President and CEO of the National Immigration Forum:
“President Trump’s proclamation is another step towards severely curtailing legal immigration to the United States. While the immediate policy implications are dire for some families who seek reunification, the proclamation opens the doors to significant changes in the system in the months ahead.
“By mandating the 30-day review of nonimmigrant programs and recommending further measures to ‘ensure the prioritization, hiring, and employment of United States workers,’ the administration is following the playbook of the 2017 immigration executive orders that laid the groundwork for the cuts to legal immigration we have seen since then.
“While the president disguises a campaign statement as a proclamation, immigrants across the nation are doing essential work as part of America’s COVID-19 response and recovery, whether as health care workers, vaccine researchers, agricultural and food service workers, or countless other jobs keeping us safe and healthy.
“This proclamation does not solve our economic problems or significantly aid U.S. workers. Instead, it sows division by promoting a view that immigrants should be viewed as competitors, undermines the trust we have in immigrants on the frontlines of the response, and will make it harder for the nation to come together to recover from COVID-19.
“Continuing to target immigrants amid the pandemic will only lead to people questioning the foreign-born workers who are on the front lines fighting this virus — leaving all of us more vulnerable.”