President Trump Bans Citizens of Seven Nations from Entry to the United States
Friday afternoon, President Trump signed an Executive Order entitled Protecting the Nation from Terrorist Attacks by Foreign Nationals. Section 3(c) of this Executive Order suspends the entry of citizens and nationals from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen into the United States for 90 days. Section 3(f) of the Executive Order permits the Secretaries of the Department of Homeland Security and State to recommend including additional countries to the list.
Over the weekend, at least four federal courts issued emergency temporary restraining orders forbidding the Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”) from removing individuals affected by the entry ban from the United States. These injunctions are generally limited to individuals physically in the United States. They do not prevent DHS from instructing airlines to refuse carriage to a citizen of an affected country to the United States, and do not require DHS to release affected individuals in the United States from detention.
Additionally, over the weekend, DHS announced that the travel ban would not affect individuals that hold Lawful Permanent Resident Status or “green cards”. Given the state of flux in this situation, California employers would be advised to cancel all international travel for its employees whose places of birth are in one of the affected nations.
This Executive Order does not affect US citizens. However US citizen employees whose ethnicity may be traced to one of the affected countries may encounter additional scrutiny upon returning to the United States after foreign travel. Additionally, in order to avoid additional inconvenience, California employers would be well served to ensure that their employees arrive in the United States at a port of entry closest to their final destination.