SAN DIEGO, CA — On Wednesday, April 22, President Trump issued a proclamation declaring immigrants “detrimental to the interests of the United States” in his latest effort to divide and distract from his failures to contain the coronavirus pandemic sweeping San Diego and the country. He then ordered the suspension of lawful immigration over the next 60 days, with limited exceptions for immigrant visa applicants who include the following:
- Spouses and children (under the age of 21) of U.S. citizens
- Nurses, doctors and medical personnel
- Essential workers as determined by the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Homeland Security
- Military personnel and their spouse and children
- Wealthy investors
Although the sudden limitation on immigration is for 60 days, it creates a dangerous precedent that could be renewed or extended at any time, and is based on little more than unfounded and harmful rhetoric designed to divide and distract. In fact, millions of immigrants are risking their lives fighting this pandemic, taking care of the sick and making sure families across the country have food on their tables.
In response to this alarming development, Alliance San Diego’s executive director and associate director issued the following statements:
Andrea Guerrero, executive director of Alliance San Diego:
“Trump’s proclamation has no basis in reality and is laden with racism and xenophobia. In declaring immigrants detrimental to the United States, Trump ignores the most enduring trait of this country — the continuous contributions of immigrants. His demeaning proclamation is an affront to the people of San Diego, nearly one-third of whom are immigrants who help weave the fabric of our community and make us stronger. This proclamation is Trump’s latest assault on immigrant families and prevents children from reuniting with their parents, and keeps husbands and wives from being with each other. Separating families does not make us safer. Protecting family unity should be paramount.”
Christopher R. Wilson, associate director of Alliance San Diego:
“In his divisive proclamation, Trump referred to immigrants as “excess labor” that harms U.S. workers at the margins. Blowing the dog whistle of racism, Trump singled out African Americans as among those “at the margin between employment and unemployment.” This tired and negative trope ignores the robust and significant contributions of African Americans in all sectors of the workforce, including in San Diego. This shameful statement recklessly pits immigrants against African Americans, when in fact we are both treated as “others” and have historically been the targets of varying degrees of oppression, discrimination and racism that this administration continues. We do not emerge from this pandemic by sacrificing one family for another. We are all in this together and we emerge by caring for all families together.”
About Alliance San Diego
Alliance San Diego is a non-profit, non-partisan 501(c)(3) community empowerment organization working to ensure that all people can achieve their full potential in an environment of harmony, safety, equality, and justice. Our mission is to provide a means for diverse individuals and organizations to share information, collaborate on issues and mobilize for change in the pursuit of social justice, especially in low-income communities and communities of color. We pursue this mission through targeted civic engagement programs and strategic coalitions that focus on specific issues and policy reforms.