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HIAS Board Member and Former USCIS Director Responds to Agency’s Change in Mission Statement

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SILVER SPRING, Md.—In response to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services changing its mission statement today to remove the phrase “nation of immigrants,” former USCIS Director and current HIAS Board Member Leon Rodriguez issued the following statement:  

“The Trump Administration has built its entire immigration and refugee policy on the premise that immigrants are a threat, not an asset. In a nation that has become a beacon to the rest of the world precisely because of the accomplishments of immigrants and their descendants, this is a particularly sad turn of history. We should not forget that under the discarded mission statement, the integrity and national security functions of USCIS grew — dramatically so — showing that we could be both a welcoming nation and a safe one. We should stop to reflect about the many opportunities that America will lose because of the attitudes reflected in this statement, and ask ourselves whether this is really the country we want to be.”

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