Press Release - Regarding Executive Order on Refugees - January 30 - 2017.pdf


January 30, 2017


Chicago, IL – On Friday, January 27, 2017, President Trump signed an executive order which halts the resettlement of refugees to the United States for 120 days, bans all Syrians from entering the country indefinitely, bans those from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Yemen, Iraq, and Sudan from entering the U.S. for 90 days, and reduces the refugee admissions ceiling from 110,000 to a meager 50,000.

The Ethiopian Community Association of Chicago (ECAC) expresses it deep disappointment with this decision and calls upon President Trump to resume the refugee admissions program. The United States of America has a long standing tradition of welcoming refugees fleeing persecution from around the world – offering safety and opportunity to the most vulnerable. Moreover, the United States is a country built of hard working immigrants and refugees who have sacrificed to make great contributions to the country. ECAC recognizes the many refugee and former refugee business owners in the Chicago area who have created jobs for their fellow Americans and added wealth to the economy.

The United States has been a vanguard of humanitarian values and a bearer of hope, compassion and resilience for refugees who undergo unimaginable harrowing situations in refugee camps often for years and years. Once in the U.S., in addition embracing American values of freedom, tolerance and peace, refugees almost always strive to succeed and to contribute to the American society through hard work and vibrant cultural contributions.

ECAC understands the security of the country and of American citizens is of utmost importance. However, ECAC firmly believes the refugee security screening and vetting process is the most stringent of all immigration processes in the U.S. and that refugees pose no higher security risk than the average American citizen.

ECAC calls upon the local community to stand with refugees – welcoming those who have fled persecution. As a result of the executive order, ECAC as an agency will suffer much loss both financially and via unavoidable staff layoffs. However, it will be the refugees in our community who will ultimately suffer the greatest losses. Please stand in support of refugees and the agencies dedicated to their support, well being, healthy transition and integration.


About the Ethiopian Community Association of Chicago

The Ethiopian Community Association of Chicago (ECAC) is a community-based non-profit organization committed to serving the educational, cultural, psychological, and socio-economic needs of low income and underserved immigrant and refugee populations. ECAC is also a gathering point and source of support for Ethiopians in Chicagoland and encourages the dissemination of Ethiopian culture through educational and social events, celebrations, and a cultural museum.

1730 W. Greenleaf Ave. | Chicago, IL 60626
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