The Trump Administration’s New Executive Order Restricts Visas for Certain Immigrants
Update: EO 13769 has been frozen by a federal court.
Executive Order 13769 was signed by Donald Trump and will go into effect on March 16, 2017. This marks the second piece of Trump-era legislation made to limit movement of people from Muslim countries to the United States. This order, signed March 6, 2017, replaces the old “travel ban,” which was suspended by federal courts.
The order suspends visas from the following countries for 90 days:
Also, the entire U.S. refugee program has been suspended for 120 days, and the new order lowers the limit of refugees from 110,000 to 50,000.
Who is Allowed In the Country?
Lawful permanent residents and existing visa holders from these countries can return to the United States. Refugees also already scheduled to come to the U.S. can enter.
Syrian refugees seeking a safe harbor are purported to be temporarily banned. Yet, actions by the current administration suggest that this could change at any time. In fact, according to The Daily Beast, the Trump Administration has stated that other countries could be added to future bans.
What’s Different About This Versus the January 2017 Ban?
Iraq is no longer on the list. According to the Trump Administration, Iraq is working with the U.S. to share more info about its citizens. This is enough to remove it from the new iteration of the travel ban.
Also, the date the order becomes active is not immediate. Time has been built in to allow people in transit to arrive to the U.S. without fear of being immediately detained. The new EO will go into effect March 16, 2017 at 12:01 AM.
Any text referring to minority religious preference has now been removed. In the previous order, refugees from minority religions in their country were given priority immigration status. For instance, if an immigrant identifying as Christian files at the exact same time as an immigrant identifying as Muslim, the Christian was given priority and would enter the U.S. sooner.
Why is the Order in Effect?
The Trump Administration says that the 6 countries on the list are suspect in higher risks of terrorist activity reaching U.S. soil.
However since 1980, there have been no confirmed cases of attacks by refugees. (Source: NPR)
If you need help with your immigration case, contact the immigration attorneys at Salmón and Haas. Our team has been dealing with many clients that are worried about how these new policies will affect them and their families. We look forward to working with you.