Apparently, the United States is no longer the “nation of immigrants.”
The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), a federal agency tasked with granting citizenship to people from foreign countries, has removed the mention of immigrants from its official mission statement.
The new statement only emphasizes “securing the homeland” and “protecting Americans,” according to an email sent to staff members by the agency’s director, L. Francis Cissna.
“U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services administers the nation’s lawful immigration system, safeguarding its integrity and promise by efficiently and fairly adjudicating requests for immigration benefits while protecting Americans, securing the homeland, and honoring our values,” the new statement reads.
The old statement, which detailed a focus on would-be Americans, was eliminated.
In the email, Cissna also said she believes “this simple, straightforward statement clearly defines the agency’s role in our country’s lawful Immigration system and the commitment we have to the American people.”
It’s not clear if the change in the mission statement will effect how the agency manages immigration applications. However, it is to be noted these changes were not made prior to President Donald Trump’s strict policies on immigration and refugees.
Trump announced he was scrapping Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, a program established by former President Barack Obama that provided protection to adults who came to U.S. as children.
Moreover, the Trump administration also drastically reduced the number of refugees to be accepted by the country.
The Immigration Service omitting “a nation of immigrants” in their official statement is like a thief saying he is not robbing you while he goes through your wallet. 🤔 #USCIS— Papa D (@ddelacruz06) February 23, 2018
Despite #USCIS's despicable decision to remove the phrase "nation of immigrants" from its mission statement, we can never erase our history nor can we deny the contributions that generations of immigrants have made to this great nation. https://t.co/1svYxEj3gP— CAPAC (@CAPAC) February 22, 2018
Whoa! Why is this okay?? This change should require a full review of funding, staffing, and authority. It is a major shift in vision, not an update! US immigration agency updates statement to no longer say 'nation of immigrants. https://t.co/rcSOCrFyuH #Immigration #politics— jkrouskoff (@jkrouskoff) February 23, 2018
This country has always been and will always be a nation of immigrants. This cannot be changed just from one day to the next just because you say so @realDonaldTrump. We are not standing for it. https://t.co/hHHUaeWcX8— MIngram1073 (@MIngram1073) February 23, 2018
Only a few words changed but huge implications for erosion of our pluralist society. US immigration agency’s mission switches from welcoming immigrants to preventing immigrants from coming in. https://t.co/DH4xZsG09T— Lin Yang (@PYDPresident) February 23, 2018
This is such BS. You can't erase the fact that we are a nation built on immigrants. In fact, the POTUS's wife is an immigrant. https://t.co/H8BXBVzJYw— Resistance is a Duty (@HMcLean2017) February 23, 2018
Thumbnail/Banner Credit: Reuters/Keith Bedford