News & Resources

Press Release: On One-Year Anniversary of the Muslim Ban, IRAP Vows to Keep Fighting

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                     

January 27, 2018


Henrike Dessaules



(New York, NY) – Today marks the one-year anniversary of the signing of the Muslim ban Executive Order, which blocked thousands of people from entering the United States, including IRAP clients fleeing persecution, and caused widespread havoc at airports across the country. What began as utter chaos and confusion ultimately inspired thousands to stand in solidarity with refugees, immigrants, and all other travelers affected by this discriminatory policy.

Since then, the International Refugee Assistance Project (IRAP) at the Urban Justice Center has been at the forefront of fighting every iteration of the travel and refugee ban in court and in our advocacy work. Thanks to the joint efforts of legal advocates and activists, more than 21,000 refugees were able to enter the United States in FY2017 after the first Executive Order went into effect. Even though the courts repeatedly agreed that the Muslim ban, in all of its forms, is unconstitutional and discriminatory, the fight against the policy continues.

“January 27, 2017 was a momentous day for democracy. In the face of xenophobic bigotry, the American people stood up for what’s right and welcomed refugees and immigrants with open arms. While it’s been incredibly inspiring to see so many engaged in fighting the ban, it is crucial that we keep our momentum going because thousands of lives are still at risk,” said Becca Heller, IRAP’s Director. “Our clients, and their stories, remind us every day why we must keep fighting.”

Despite being enjoined by the lower courts, the travel restrictions on six majority-Muslim countries are currently in effect until the Supreme Court will review them. The Administration’s latest refugee restrictions were partially blocked by a District Judge on December 23, 2017. The government has appealed this decision.

Although legal challenges continue to lie ahead, IRAP vows to steadfastly challenge the Trump Administration’s dangerous and prejudiced policies until justice is served. To commemorate the movement that started a year ago today, IRAP launched the #SendASign advocacy campaign to continue spreading messages in support of refugees and all the individuals affected by the Muslim ban.

To view the press release, click here.