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Multicultural Relations

Refugees, Immigrants, and Executive Orders

“…I was a stranger and you welcomed me.” 
—Matthew 25:35

Travel Ban and Executive Orders
An Update: March 17, 2017

On March 6, 2017, President Trump signed Executive Order 13780, entitled "Protecting the Nation from Terrorist Entry into the United States." The order includes a revised entry ban on nationals of 6 countries (Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen).

The new order states that it revokes and replaces Executive Order 13769 in its entirety, effective March 16, 2017. The administration hopes that the new order will address the legal challenges that barred enforcement of the prior 90-day entry bar on citizens of the same six countries plus Iraq, that had been instituted by Executive Order 13769 before its enforcement was enjoined by court order in February. Given the similarity of the second executive order to the first one, on March 13, 2017, the State of Washington filed a motion asking the Seattle District Court to extend the preliminary injunction issued on the first executive order to the second executive order. If the court does so, enforcement of the second order would be enjoined as well.

The new executive order sets a 90-day entry bar on certain nationals from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen. The 90-day period would start on the executive order's effective date, March 16, 2017 at 12:01 a.m. eastern time (10 days after the Executive Order was signed). This 90-day period would end on June 13 or 14, 2017, depending on whether you count the first and last days of the 90-day period.

Section 13 of Executive Order 13780 also provides that "Executive Order 13769 of January 27, 2017, is revoked as of the effective date of this order."

On March 15, 2017, the U.S. District Court in Hawaii issued a nationwide temporary restraining order, preventing the Government from enforcing the Executive Order 13780's Section 2(c) entry bar and Section 6 refugee admission bar, which were scheduled to go into effect on March 16, 2017.

On March 16, 2017, the U.S. District Court in Maryland followed suit, and issued a nationwide preliminary injunction, preventing the Government from enforcing Executive Order 13780's Section 2(c) 90-day entry bar, but not the Section 6 refugee admissions bar. Also read the court opinion supporting the preliminary injunction order.

Other sections of Executive Order 13780 that are not enjoined by a court became effective at 12:01 a.m. eastern time on March 16, 2017.

The Office of Multicultural Relations continues to monitor these circumstances. If any Seminary office or departments relating to and extending invitations to scholars, students, researchers, etc., from these countries or any other global location, please contact our office at [email protected] or [email protected]. Due to numerous risks and uncertainties regardless of the temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction, it is our strongest recommendation that you ask questions prior to any arrangement or invitation.


Rev. Dr. Victor Aloyo, Jr. PDSO
Associate Dean for Institutional Diversity
and Community Engagement

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