Canadian Tech Community Responds to President Trump’s Immigration Ban

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An open letter signed by members of Canada’s technology community calls for the federal government to offer visas to those affected by US President Donald Trump’s immigration ban.

“Canadian tech companies understand the power of inclusion and diversity of thought, and that talent and skill know no borders,” the letter reads. “In choosing to hire, train, and mentor the best people in the world, we can build global companies that grow our economy.”

The letter, organized by Tech Without Borders, requests a visa which would allow displaced people to work in Canada with benefits until they can complete the process for permanent residency.

“The Canadian tech community calls on the Canadian federal government to institute an immediate and targeted visa providing those currently displaced by the US Executive Order with temporary residency in Canada,” the letter reads. “This visa would allow these residents to live and work in Canada with access to benefits until such time as they can complete the application process for permanent residency if they so choose.”

Executives at Shopify, Google, and Facebook have signed the letter.

“Diversity is our strength,” reads the letter. “We believe providing refuge to people seeking safety should remain our compass.”

President Trump says the goal of the ban, which is temporary, is to “make America safe again.” He noted the ban has thus far affected very few travelers—“Only 109 people out of 325,000 were detained and held for questioning,” he tweeted.

It’s also worth mentioning that his list of seven countries, which have been criticized for favoring nations where Trump has business, was actually created by the Obama administration, and that Bill Clinton called for a virtually identical ban of illegal immigrants during his presidency in 1996.

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