The Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance, AFL-CIO strongly condemns President Donald Trump’s latest executive orders that would build a wall between the U.S. and Mexico, increase enforcement and detention, and withhold federal funding for sanctuary cities, in addition to the expected actions to ban Muslims and refugees.
“There is no doubt that this a direct attack on the majority of the country. Trump’s unabashed advancement of right-wing policies reflects his gross neglect of what is profoundly American: to value diversity no matter faith, nationality, skin color—or any self or perceived identity,” declared Johanna Puno Hester, APALA national president.
Not even a week into his term, Trump continues to forge a dangerous path for any type of serious conversation that could bring our country together. Instead, his demagoguery is so polarizing and continues to criminalize people of color, immigrants and refugees, Muslims, women, LGBTQ and indigenous communities.
“No person should fear to simply exist. From the Chinese Exclusion Act to the incarceration of Japanese Americans to the Southeast Asian deportation crisis, our Asian American and Pacific Islander community intimately understands the deep arc of racial violence, oppression, and criminalization against our community,” added Monica Thammarath, APALA first vice president. “And still, our Black and Brown brothers and sisters from all backgrounds continue to face persecution.”
Hester continued: “The economic and cultural contributions of immigrants and refugees on our history and strength as a nation have been immeasurable. To denounce and minimize their existence is to denounce our ideals of freedom and equality that we as Americans hold dear. As an immigrant myself, I am ashamed that the so-called 'leader of the free world' is prioritizing, promoting and expanding state-sanctioned prejudice that panders to a white supremacist status quo.”
Needed now more than ever is to work with community leaders, organizers on the ground, and local and state representatives in government to protect our communities, our children, and our families from the hateful, racist, Islamophobic, and xenophobic actions that will arise from such orders. We stand side by side with our allies, organizing our bases to protect all immigrants, Muslims, and refugees that are targets of Trump’s deplorable executive actions.
We’re here to stay. We declare black lives matter. We demand not one more deportation. We are better than this – we are stronger than hate.