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Under Trump’s Radical Immigration Policies, Parents of U.S. Citizens, Doctors, and Police Chiefs Detained; Economy Hit
Across the nation we’re seeing tidal wave effects from Trump’s assault on immigrants, refugees and Muslims across America. From schools now dealing with deportation fears to a potential shortage of doctors in rural America to damage to the travel industry to more troubling examples of an “unshackled” ICE and CBP, we are confronting the consequences of Trump’s radical immigration policies, which are unpopular and un-American. Below are selected examples and excerpts of the consequences on display:
In a new piece entitled, “‘Your child is safe’: Schools address deportation fears among immigrant families,” Moriah Ballingit and Emma Brown, writing for the Washington Post, highlight the continued fears of mixed-status families and growing concern of school administrators as Trump’s Deportation Force expands and parents of U.S. citizen children are deported:
The schools superintendent in Harrisonburg, Va., was meeting parents this month when a mother broke down in tears, explaining that she was undocumented. What would the school do, she asked, if she became separated from her children?
“I remember walking up to her and putting my arm on her shoulder and saying, ‘Your child is safe at our school,’ ” said Scott Kizner, the city schools chief. But he also advised those at the meeting in the Shenandoah Valley that any parents worried about deportation “need to make plans.”
Across the country, President Trump’s promise to crack down on illegal immigration is leading schools with large immigrant communities to consider how to care for children whose parents could be detained in federal raids. Parents, teachers and administrators have raised questions about how schools should respond if U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents come to a school to take away students or obtain records — even though the agency’s policy restricts enforcement actions on school grounds.
Millions of U.S. children face growing uncertainty at home because of shifts in immigration policy. The Pew Research Center estimates 3.9 million schoolchildren had an unauthorized immigrant parent in 2014 — or 7.3 percent of all schoolchildren. About 725,000 of those children were unauthorized immigrants themselves.
In the New York Times, Miriam Jordan reports on the shortage of doctors in rural America due to the Trump Administration’s change in the H1-B visa policy. The new policy temporarily suspended the premium processing option, which previously allowed employers to pay an extra fee to expedite the visa approval process. As Jordan notes:
Small-town America relies on a steady flow of doctors from around the world to deliver babies, treat heart ailments and address its residents’ medical needs. But a recent, little-publicized decision by the government to alter the timetable for some visa applications is likely to delay the arrival of new foreign doctors, and is causing concern in the places that depend on them.
While the Trump administration is fighting, in the courts of justice and public opinion, for its temporary travel ban affecting six countries, the slowdown in the rural doctor pipeline shows how even a small, relatively uncontroversial change can ripple throughout the country.
Aside from the H1-B visa policy change, President Trump’s original Muslim and refugee ban further impacted the medical community – blocking and detaining doctors and impeding patient care.
Also due to the ban, Hassan Aden – a former police chief from Alexandria, Virginia – was detained at JFK airport for over an hour, according to the Washington Post’s Faiz Siddiqui. Alden, an Italian-born naturalized U.S. citizen has lived in America for 42 years – nearly half a century. According to Siddiqui:
Aden said that he is a frequent traveler and that when his wife worried that something like this might happen in advance of his trip, he shrugged it off, thinking “no way.”
“This experience makes me question if this is indeed home, ” Aden said on Facebook. “My freedoms were restricted, and I cannot be sure it won’t happen again, and that it won’t happen to my family, my children, the next time we travel abroad. This country now feels . . . in the beginning stages of a country that is isolating itself from the rest of the world — and its own people — in an unprecedented fashion.”
The incident robbed him of that sense of comfort, he said.
““I feel . . . vulnerable and I feel as though citizens and foreign nationals have zero control about what happens and there’s no accountability for what happens in there.
Finally after about an hour, a friendlier officer took over and took an interest in Aden’s case, he said. He said she prodded the other agency for updates and eventually cleared him for entry.
Aden, who uses TSA PreCheck, sailed through security and made his afternoon flight to the District, he said. As the ordeal unfolded, Aden said, “I wondered about others. What happens to people when they don’t know any better?”
“I’m sure it’s terrorizing a lot of people and not making us any safer.”
[Chuck Wexler, executive director of the Police Executive Research Forum] too, raised concerns about the treatment of everyday citizens. “It really doesn’t matter whether Hassan was a police officer or former deputy chief,” Wexler. “What matters is that he should have been treated with respect.”
Finally, Robert Wall, reporting for the Wall Street Journal, overviews the potential travel industry damage of Trump’s immigration policies:
Turmoil over President Donald Trump’s efforts to curb immigration risks reducing tourism to the U.S. beyond the impact the strong dollar has already had on the country’s attractiveness for holidaymakers, one of the world’s biggest travel organizations said Monday.
Spending by foreign visitors to the U.S. could shrink this year as a result of the dollar’s rally against most major currencies, with an estimated decline of around $1.2 billion, or 0.6% of the total, likely to prove “conservative” in the context of Mr. Trump’ travel ban, said David Scowsill, president and chief executive of the World Travel & Tourism Council.
“The message that has gone out around the world is that the U.S. is effectively closing for business,” Mr. Scowsill said in an interview.
According to Frank Sharry, Executive Director of America’s Voice Education Fund:
Exactly two months ago, Donald Trump assumed the highest office in the country. Since then he and his Administration have been hell-bent on instilling fear and chaos throughout the immigrant, Muslim, and refugee communities. Given his ill-advised, broad brushstroke policies and executive orders, the ripple effects are not surprising but terribly disturbing. This is not a partisan issue – the vast majority of Americans are united in opposition to Trump’s cruel, chaotic, and costly immigration agenda. It’s time for the GOP to step up, rein in the Trump Administration, and defend the American people and our values from the Trump Administration’s assault on Americans by its federal government.