Press Release

AFT's Weingarten on Executive Actions

For Release: 

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Contact:

Michael Heenan
202/585-4371; Cell:202/577-3941
mheenan@aft.org

WASHINGTON—American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten on President Donald Trump’s anti-immigrant executive orders:

“Today, President Trump took his divisive campaign rhetoric and turned it into inhumane actions against the most vulnerable. The Statue of Liberty in New York City—the same city that made Trump rich—says, ‘Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.’ Trump has turned his back on these values and said, ‘Not anymore.’ 

“Criminalizing immigrants, shutting down our southern border and turning away people seeking refuge based on religion or nationality runs contrary to the fabric of this great nation, which was founded by immigrants fleeing tyranny and persecution. We must remember that America is great when we lead by our moral compass, not with fear. These executive actions will leave millions of families fearful for their safety.

“Monday, Trump focused on jobs and infrastructure, which is what Americans elected him to do; today, he turned his back on this nation of immigrants. His new policies will sow the seeds of distrust between the immigrant community and law enforcement, restrict civil rights, put children at risk and tear apart families.

“We vehemently oppose any effort to demonize and scapegoat communities based on religion, nationality or sexual orientation. We will continue to stand up for our students, their families and our communities. And we will stand against enforcement measures that generate widespread fear, encourage discrimination and institutionalize racial profiling, as today’s actions intend to do.”

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The AFT represents 1.6 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.