The 9th Circuit’s nationwide injunction against President Donald Trump’s third travel ban was lift by the U.S. Supreme Court on June 16. This is Trump’s first victory in court since the January 2017 travel ban. Many people are now facing indefinite separation from their families from the affected countries. Many more people will be denied protection from persecution.
Trump claims that the travel ban is necessary in order to safeguard national security. Many, including 26 former generals and admirals, are disputing this claim. They filed an amicus brief urging U.S. Supreme Court not to invalidate the travel ban. As a researcher who studies U.S. immigration laws, policies and human rights, it is important that I explain the substantial numeric impact of the ban on refugees and U.S. families.
Not only will refugees and their families be refuse entry, but also foreign nationals from all the countries list in the travel ban. Students, workers, tourists, business travellers, and students will all be denied entry. Refugees and their families are the most important human rights and humanitarian reasons to take care of others.
Travel Ban 3.0, Explained
These three travel bans were design to block U.S. entry for nationals of a total 10 countries. Today, the travel ban is still in effect for seven countries: Iran, Libyan, North Korea Somalia, North Korea Somalia, Syria and Venezuela. Travel restrictions can vary from one country to the next. Venezuela is the country with the most restrictive travel restrictions. Indefinite travel restrictions are only applicable to certain government officials and their immediate families. These unusual restrictions will have minimal impact on family unification and refugee admissions. This is why I did not include Venezuela in my analysis.
Indefinite travel bans for permanent immigration to the U.S. are impose on all other countries. This ban applies to all immigrants who wish to live in the United States with their family members, as well as refugees. There are also different restrictions on temporary immigration. North Korea and Syria have the most restrictive travel restrictions. Indefinite suspension of all temporary immigration from these countries. Indefinite suspension is only possible for temporary visitors to Libya and Yemen. Iran suspends all temporary immigration, except for students and exchange visitors. For Somalia, however, all temporary immigration is not suspend, but subject to further scrutiny.
If admission is in the national interests, exceptions to the travel ban are allow for certain individuals on a case-by-case basis. This applies to lawful permanent residents, students, asylum-seekers and refugees, among other things. Justice Stephen Breyer, in his dissension, attempt to quantify how many waivers of the travel ban were grant. He concluded that the government only applied the waiver to a small percentage of eligible visas, rendering it meaningless.
Family Immigration Ban Has A Tangible Impact
Two factors determine family immigration to the U.S., from any one nation. The first is the need for visas by family members who are already living in the U.S. and can sponsor family members. For visas that are numerically limited, the availability of visas to that country in any given year.
The patterns of family immigration in a country tend to stay relatively stable over time. Based on data from seven countries (except Venezuela), it is possible to calculate how many immigrants will be prevented indefinitely entry to the U.S. For the three most recent years, 2014 to 2016, detailed profiles were made public. The Iranian, Libyan, North Korea and Somalia sent between 8,000- 15,000 children and parents of U.S citizens.
The same countries also sent between 3000 and 7000 other eligible family members, including siblings of U.S citizens and spouses of lawful permanent resident. In just three years, over 35,000 relatives from these countries came together to form the U.S. Iran and Yemen were the top two sending most people, followed closely by Syria and Somalia.
Family members are also less likely to be able to visit one another in the U.S. because of the travel ban. Even though the ban was stopped by the courts, there was still a significant drop in the number of non immigrants or temporary migrants from these countries. Iran has sent the most non immigrants out of all the countries that have been banned from travel in the past decade. Nearly 30,000 Iranian non immigrants arrived in the United States from Iran in 2016. In 2017, less than 20,000 people arrived.
This Is What It Means For Refugees
The United Nations states that the travel ban applies to countries in serious humanitarian crises involving large flows of refugees. The most affected are Syrians. These refugees account for 5.5 million of the total 25.4 million global refugees. However, Iran and Somalia have almost 1 million refugees each, while Yemen and Libya have close to 300,000, and Libya has just over 100,000. The protracted refugee crisis is currently facing four of these countries: Iran, Somalia and Syria. North Korea is the only country to report a low number of 2,245, but this could be due to North Koreans’ fear that they will escape or report their presence when they do.