State Officials React to President Trump’s Executive Order on Refugees
Thousands have erupted in protest in major airports across the nation as a result of the Executive Order signed by President Donald Trump.
As a result of his ban on refugees admission into the country several people have been detained and rejected entry, or re-entry, into the United States. The ban is for people coming in from seven predominately Muslim nations. This ban has the Governor and State Attorney General concerned and outraged. Both Governor Cuomo and Attorney General Schneiderman have released statements on the actions taken by President Trump.
Governor Andrew Cuomo
I never thought I'd see the day when refugees, who have fled war-torn countries in search of a better life, would be turned away at our doorstep. We are a nation of bridges, not walls, and a great many of us still believe in the words 'give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses...' This is not who we are, and not who we should be. I have directed the Port Authority, the Department of State, and my Counsel's Office to jointly explore all legal options to assist anyone detained at New York airports, and ensure that their rights are protected. America is a nation of laws and those laws provide rights that must be respected and followed regardless of political ideology.
Attorney General Eric Schneiderman
I will do everything in my power to help those who have been victimized by President Trump's discriminatory and dangerous executive action. My staff has been in contact with lawyers for the detained refugees at JFK Airport and I have directed attorneys in my office to provide whatever legal assistance possible to them. President Trump's executive action against war refugees represents a new low in modern American foreign policy and it is incumbent on us to fight back.
Governor Cuomo has also set up a confidential toll-free hotline for New Yorkers to report family members, relatives, friends or colleagues believed to be passengers on flights coming into the state, but are missing or believed to be detained. The hotline bolsters the state’s efforts to protect the rights of New Yorkers, their families and loved ones and allows those left in extremely vulnerable situations to notify the Department of State.
Both the Governor and State Attorney General are exploring all legal options to assist anyone detained at New York airports, and ensure that the rights of refugees are protected under the law.
Attorney General Schneiderman has also sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), demanding that the agencies describe specific steps they are taking to ensure compliance with a federal court’s injunction and restraining order regarding President Trump’s most recent executive order on immigration.
Any New Yorkers who have family that are either detained, or feel may be detained can call 1-888-769-7243. The hotline will operate 24/7 and translation services will be available.