How Do I Stop Trump's Travel Ban? Here Are 5 Ways To Help
The Trump administration is pushing a new travel ban that affects the same six Muslim countries as his first two Muslim bans: Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen.
The new travel ban will allow people with a parent, fiancé or fiancée, sibling, or child to enter the United States. People who have a job acceptance or university admission can also come into the country.
The cutoff date for refugees who have already booked travel has been extended through Thursday, according to the L.A. Times. A cap has been set for 50,000, so the Thursday date is flexible, depending on when the cap is met.
While the travel ban has changed in name, and made a few more provisions for people with tight ties to the U.S., a lot of refugee families could still be separated, since it doesn't make room for extended family members like grandparents, uncles, aunts, and cousins.
This is a stressful time of uncertainty for many Muslim families living in the United States who have relatives trying to connect with them here. When you aren't affected, it's easier to feel like there really is nothing you can do, but every little gesture helps.
Here are a few ways that you can help fight any negative affects of this travel ban and also assist refugees who are already in the country.
1. Use Your Lyft, Since They're Partnering With ACLU
Lyft is partnering with American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) this month for their third "Round Up And Donate" charity. For the month of July, users can round up their Lyft ride fares to the nearest dollar in their apps and easily donate the difference to ACLU, which has actively fought both Muslim bans.
In the previous months, Lyft worked with the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) for Pride Month in June and the United Service Organizations (USO) in May for Military Appreciation Month.
Regardless of what's earned through users, Lyft aims to donate $1,000,000 to the ACLU over the next four years, according to Lyft's head of inclusion and diversity, Tariq Meyers.
2. Keep An Immigration Lawyer's Number Handy
Even if you don't need an immigration lawyer, you might stumble across someone in your town who needs help. Keep a number in your phone to share just in case.
Lots of lawyers have been offering their services for free, like the ones who showed up to New York's JFK airport when the first Muslim ban left several airport detainees in a sticky situation.
3. Donate Directly To Organizations That Help Refugees
There are lots! You can donate to a national organization like the ACLU, but you can also make a direct impact on your own community by sending funds or supplies to an organization in your own town.
This is especially helpful if you live in a small town that doesn't get as much national attention.
4. Find Out How You Can Volunteer.
Money and other supplies are great, but a lot of organizations need actual hands on deck.
The Islamic Relief USA (IRUSA) does job training and provides shelter for refugee families. You can enter your zip code into their website to see if there are any volunteer opportunities near your town.
5. Speak Out On Social Media
Sure, you can write to your state senators and do your part that way, but Muslims have been targeted because of the Islamophobic narrative. Politics might not be your thing on social media, but tweeting out simple words of affirmation to the Muslim community means a lot.
The attitude toward Muslims has to change person by person. Be the one in your social circle who shows support to Muslims, and highlight their humanity in the midst of this travel ban.