FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Jan. 27, 2017
Contact: Mary Tablante;
NCAPA Denounces Trump’s Executive Order Attacking Muslims and Refugees
The National Council of Asian Pacific Americans (NCAPA) strongly condemns President Trump’s executive order today, which includes a ban on the entry of individuals from certain Arab and Muslim-majority countries; an indefinite ban on Syrian refugees; a suspension of the U.S. refugee resettlement program; and a drastic reduction of refugee admissions.
“President Trump’s actions are the first step in his proposed ban on Muslim immigrants, based on fear mongering, hate, and bigotry and peddled through the lie that they will make our country safer. This executive order will not protect our nation, and today’s observance of Holocaust Remembrance Day underscores its discrimination,” said NCAPA National Director Christopher Kang. “President Trump’s order also will cruelly turn our nation’s back on refugees, who are the most vulnerable, and ignore our American values and history.”
In 1882, fear, hysteria, and prejudice led the federal government to pass the Chinese Exclusion Act, the first--but not the last--federal law to exclude a specific ethnic group from immigrating to this country. During World War II, 120,000 loyal Japanese Americans were incarcerated in detention camps, even though none was ever charged with a crime. After 9/11, the government created the National Security Entry-Exit Registration System (NSEERS), which targeted foreign nationals from 25 countries based on religion, ethnicity, and national origin and caused harm particularly to Arab, Middle Eastern, Muslim and South Asian communities--but did not lead to a single terrorism conviction. These are dark chapters in our nation’s history that must not be repeated today.
Our Asian American history also includes many Southeast Asian Americans who came as refugees, risking their lives to flee war in their home countries. Refugees are fleeing violence and persecution, and the majority are children. All refugees--including those from Syria--already face extremely rigorous levels of scrutiny before they can enter the United States.
The orders build on anti-immigrant executive orders announced Wednesday that strip would funding from sanctuary cities and increase deportations.
Based in Washington, D.C., the National Council of Asian Pacific Americans is a coalition of 35 national Asian Pacific American organizations that serves to represent the interests of Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) communities and to provide a national voice for our communities’ concerns. Our communities are the fastest growing racial/ethnic group in the United States, currently making up approximately six percent of the population.