To: Rex Tillerson, Secretary of State, John Kelly, Secretary of Homeland Security, The United States House of Representatives, and The United States Senate
Let Our Families In
The State Department's interpretation of the Supreme Court ruling allowing for a partial Muslim Ban is cruel and redefines family in a narrow way in order to keep relatives from six Muslim-majority countries, including the elderly and the ill, banned from entry. We call on our elected officials to speak out and demand that the guidelines be reversed immediately.
Why is this important?
When the Supreme Court issued its ruling last week, allowing Trump's Muslim Ban to go into effect, it included an exemption for individuals with "bona fide" ties to U.S. persons or entities, such as having family members here.
But this morning, the State Department—headed by Trump appointee Rex Tillerson—issued guidelines that redefine family in the narrowest and cruelest way possible, limiting the exceptions to just immediate family members and sons- and daughters-in-law.
This means that persons with other ties to the U.S.—grandparents, aunts and uncles, nieces and nephews—are banned due to the racist and anti-Muslim executive orders.
This narrow re-definition of family is unacceptable and is clearly intended to break up Muslim and refugee families. We call on elected officials to demand that the State Department reverse these guidelines immediately and let all of our families in.
According to Tillerson's State Department: grandparents, grandchildren, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins, brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, fiancees, and any other relatives do not fit the definition of family members.
Yes, you read that right—the Trump administration doesn't think grandmas and grandpas count as family members, and is banning them from the country based on nothing other than where they come from.
The executive orders and these State Department guidelines are clearly built on a foundation of anti-Muslim, anti-Arab, and anti-refugee hate. And it's clear that the administration is still bent on implementing as much of its Muslim Ban as it can get away with.
It's up to us to stop them from getting away with it.
Tell your elected officials to let Tillerson and the State Department know that it's not up to them to tell us what our families look like—and to call on them to reverse their bizarre and inhumane guidelines.