Advocates Urge Department Of Homeland Security To Provide Immediate Guidance On Muslim Ban Implementation

Washington, D.C. – Americans United for Separation of Church and State, Muslim Advocates and the Southern Poverty Law Center urged the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to release immediate guidance and precise criteria outlining how the department intends to implement Monday’s U.S. Supreme Court decision allowing the Muslim ban to take partial effect. 

Under the Supreme Court’s order, people from the six Muslim-majority countries identified by President Trump may enter the United States if they have a “bona fide rela­tionship with a person or entity in the United States.” But people who do not have such connections, and who do not fall within one of the exceptions listed in Trump’s executive order, will need to apply for a “waiver.”

In their letter, the organizations requested guidance within 48 hours of receipt of the letter and no later than the date of implementation of the executive order on how affected individuals can apply for waivers and on what qualifies as a “bona fide relationship” with a person or entity in the United States.

Along with this letter, the organizations also sent DHS and the Department of State a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request asking for additional information about how the federal government intends to implement the case-by-case waiver provisions of the Muslim ban.

It is the duty of the Administration and DHS to provide guidance to protect the rights of immigrants and travelers to the United States, and to limit the inevitable confusion and chaos that will arise out of implementation of any part of the Muslim Ban.

The request letter is available online here.

The FOIA request is available online here.

Muslim Advocates is a national legal advocacy and educational organization that works on the frontlines of civil rights to guarantee freedom and justice for Americans of all faiths.

The Southern Poverty Law Center, based in Alabama with offices in Florida, Georgia, Louisiana and Mississippi, is a nonprofit civil rights organization dedicated to fighting hate and bigotry, and to seeking justice for the most vulnerable members of society. For more information, see www.splcenter.org.

Americans United is a religious liberty watchdog group based in Washington, D.C. Founded in 1947, the organization educates Americans about the importance of church-state separation in safeguarding religious freedom.