Skip to main content

LATEST UPDATES: Racial Justice | Tracking COVID-19 (coronavirus)

San Diego Leaders Condemn President Trump’s Immigration Order

Assemblymember Todd Gloria, D-San Diego, attends a protest at the San Diego I...

Credit: @ToddGloria / Twitter

Above: Assemblymember Todd Gloria, D-San Diego, attends a protest at the San Diego International Airport, Jan. 29, 2017.

Impacts Of Trump's Refugee Action On Refugees Settling In San Diego


David Murphy, executive director, International Rescue Committee, San Diego program


President Donald Trump’s temporary immigration ban prompted protests nationwide over the weekend. In San Diego, hundreds of protesters appeared at the San Diego International Airport carrying signs reading "No Muslim ban; protect immigrants,'' "Build a wall; we will tear it down,'' "San Diegans (heart) our immigrants'' and other messages.

Trump's executive order, signed Friday, suspends all refugee entries for 120 days, indefinitely blocks all Syrian refugees and bars entry for 90 days to all immigrants from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen.

The executive director of the San Diego chapter of the International Rescue Committee, which helps resettle refugees in the San Diego area, said there is a lot of fear in the community.

"We've had a huge outpouring of concern from refugees, migrants, immigrants and just local community members — 'what does this mean for me?' 'am I going to be deported?'" said David Murphy, the executive director.

Once refugees come to the United States, they are eligible for a green card after one year and citizenship after five years.

"Even refugees who have come here and are U.S. citizens, they are still fearful that they are going to be deported," he said.

Murphy said 4 percent of refugees that come to the United States settle in San Diego. In 2016, that was almost 4,000 refugees. The top five refugee groups were Iraqi, Syrian, Afghan, Somali and Congolese.

RELATED: San Diego Groups Await Trump’s Executive Orders On Refugee Program

Several people traveling from the countries included in the ban were detained at airports as they tried to enter the United States this weekend. San Diego airport authorities have confirmed there are currently no detainees in San Diego.

Many local leaders spoke out against the president’s order on social media. Some attended the protests at Lindbergh Field.

Rep. Susan Davis, D-San Diego, said Sunday in a statement, “Congress needs to take immediate action to repeal Trump’s Executive Order. The Muslim ban is a policy based on fear not strength.” 

Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Vista, released a statement Monday saying “a welcoming America is not incompatible with a strong and secure America.” He also mentioned the country needs to reestablish “strong and clear screening procedures” for immigrants.

Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Alpine, issued a joint statement along with Rep. Kinzinger, R-IL, urging President Trump to make an exempt Iraqi's who helped U.S. personnel overseas from his immigration order.

SD Leaders React To POTUS' Immigration Freeze


San Diego News Matters podcast branding

KPBS' daily news podcast covering local politics, education, health, environment, the border and more. New episodes are ready weekday mornings so you can listen on your morning commute.

  • Don’t have time to keep up on the latest news? We’ve got you covered with a mid-week check-in every Wednesday afternoon.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Midday Edition banner

KPBS Midday Edition is a daily radio news magazine keeping San Diego in the know on everything from politics to the arts.

Want more KPBS news?
Find us on Twitter and Facebook, or sign up for our newsletters.

To view PDF documents, Download Acrobat Reader.