Vote Recommendation on NO BAN Act and Access to Counsel Act (3-11-2020)

To view PDF version click here: No Ban Act House Vote Rec 11MARCH2020

 

March 11, 2020

RE: Vote Recommendation on NO BAN Act and Access to Counsel Act

Dear Representative:

On behalf of Amnesty International USA and our over two million members and supporters in the United States, we recommend you VOTE YES on H.R. 2214, the NO BAN Act, in its current form.

Nondiscrimination is a core provision in all international human rights instruments, and our research has demonstrated how every version of the Muslim ban has shown itself to be deadly, dangerous, and disastrous. Executive orders and policies intended to discriminate against based on religion are unjustifiable under international human rights law.

President Trump’s most recent executive proclamation, signed on January 31, 2020, expanded the list of banned countries by adding Nigeria, Eritrea, Myanmar, Kyrgyzstan, Sudan, and Tanzania. This latest act demonstrates the urgent need for Congress to pass legislation to curb the President’s power to discriminatorily restrict people from coming to the U.S. based on their national origin or religion. These bans do not represent the will of the American people and do not respect human rights.

It is time for Congress to rescind all versions of the Muslim ban, and all other dangerous and discriminatory policies that prevent children, families, and individuals from coming to the United States. A first and vital step would be for Congress to pass the NO BAN Act. We strongly support this measure because if passed it would: (1) undo the animus-driven “Muslim ban” and check the President’s ability to discriminate on the basis of religion; (2) rescind the administration’s attempt to unlawfully limit the right of asylum at the U.S. border; and (3) remove needless impediments upon refugees seeking resettlement, who are already subject to more vetting than any other group entering the United States.

Amnesty International USA also strongly supports the Access to Counsel Act, which ensures that individuals being held or detained for inspection at land crossings and ports of entry have the right to access legal representation. The announcement of the first Muslim ban unleashed chaos across the country, leading to people – including green card holders, refugees, children, and the elderly – suddenly being detained for prolonged periods of time at airports and wrongfully denied access to counsel while held there. The Access to Counsel Act would guarantee that individuals subjected to secondary inspection for prolonged periods of time can access the legal counsel they desperately need.

Congress must pass both the NO BAN Act and the Access to Counsel Act and strongly recommends all Members of Congress VOTE YES on this critical legislation.

For any questions or for further information, please contact Ryan Mace at [email protected].

Sincerely,

 

Joanne Lin

National Director, Advocacy & Government Affairs

Amnesty International USA

 

Ryan Mace

Senior Policy Advisor

Amnesty International USA

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