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Dear Friends,

Our President’s overtly racist comments yesterday about immigrants from Haiti and African countries bring added clarity to the role of racism in our immigration policies. We are at a stage in this country where those with the highest power in the land are transparently discussing immigration policy in racist terms to further ensure the dominance of those from white, largely European backgrounds in the United States. Their words matter, and we must speak out against them.

This is a moment for all of us to take a stand against both overt and unconscious white superiority and against dialogue that positions groups of people as inferior to others because of their skin color or country of origin. We need to see what is happening clearly and directly address it. It is a moment for both outrage and introspection.

The President’s comments disparaged immigrants across this country, including the Tahirih Justice Center’s clients. The powerful women we serve, who demand freedom from violence and access to justice, are among those who the President would prefer to keep out of the country. Let us all arise in unity to reject the notion of white, European-descended superiority and protect the idea “that no one should exalt himself over the other.”

At Tahirih, we are actively working, through legal representation, non-partisan policy advocacy, and community outreach, against the bias that impacts our clients every day. We are on the frontlines of the immigration policy debate to ensure that survivors of violence from around the world can access the long-standing protections to which they are entitled under our laws. We fight to safeguard their right to a fair asylum process and protect the critical programs that enable them to seek safety from their abusers and traffickers. We are committed to raising the voices of survivors in meetings with Congress and the White House and to educating policymakers and the public about the injustices our clients face.

But we cannot do this work alone. Please join us in standing with immigrants and against attempts to use race and ethnicity to determine who is allowed in the United States.

In solidarity,

Layli Miller-Muro
CEO and Founder