Call Your Reps: Border Agents Out Of Bounds

Hi everyone:

In the last couple of hours, I’ve read two articles describing how, yet again, our border agents are specifically targeting people who are Muslim for illegal questioning upon entering the United States, and denial of entry.  These practices run counter to stated policy that the US Customs and Border Protection (CPB)  “does not discriminate on the entry of foreign nationals to the United States based on religion, race, ethnicity or sexual orientation”

I created this callsheet to focus on it. Want to join me?  Steps below.

  1. Background
  2. Contact Info
  3.  Sample Scripts

1. Background

First news piece:  Fadwa Alaoui, a Canadian citizen who, like many other Canadians in her area,  often visits Vermont  for shopping trips, is denied along with her family (including her young son recuperating from chemotherapy treatment) from entering the US after 4 hours of questioning. The reason? Prayer videos on her phone. (And yeah – they asked for her phone’s password)
CBC article here

Second News piece: Hina Shamsi, A US permanent resident who is a lawyer for the ACLU  traveling with her Pakistani passport was stopped and questioned for hours about the nature of her work, and much more.

“Why, asked the CBP agent holding my Pakistani passport, would someone working for an organization with “American” in its name have “this” passport?”

“No government agent ever asked the chilling question I was asked this time: Do you understand why someone might have a different perspective about you?

Read the full piece here.

I’d say that both these pieces are really worth your time reading in full. 

2. Contact Info

Senators: Find them under “contact your senators” tab here

Congressperson: Find them by state & district in “find your rep” tab here
                                  or by entering your zipcode here

3. Scripts – live (& voicemail)

Script for Live Phone Call:

Hi, my name is _____ and I’m a constituent of ______. I’m calling with a comment. Can you help me by taking it down? Thank You!

I’m calling because I am deeply concerned by recent cases in which the U.S. Customs and Border Protection seem to have discriminated against people entering the US because they are Muslim or because of the work they do.  Specifically the case of Canadian Citizen Fadwa Alaoui, and the case of  Hina Shamsi, a lawyer for the ACLU.

So, I’d like to share Two things with you: 
First, I’d like to pass onto the Congressman/woman/Senator and their legislative aide who deals with things like this the names of these two people, so they can read more about their cases. Can you take these two people’s names down and pass them on for me?  Thank you!

Secondly, I urge the Congressman/woman/Senator to read up on these two cases and speak out against them and other discrimnatory actions taken by Customs and Border Protection recently. And lastly, I call on her/him to call for an investigation into these violations.  They’re not fair and they don’t help keep us safe.  Thank you!

Script for Voicemail:

Hi, my name is ______ and I’m a constituent of ______. I’m calling because I am deeply concerned by recent cases in which the U.S. Customs and Border Protection seem to have discriminated against people entering the US because they are Muslim or because of the work they do.  Specifically the case of Canadian Citizen Fadwa Alaoui, and the case of  Hina Shamsi, a lawyer for the ACLU.

I urge the Congressman/woman/Senator to read up on these two cases and speak out against them and  other discrimnatory actions taken by Customs and Border Protection recently. In addition, I urge her/him to call for an investigation into these violations.  They’re not fair and they don’t help keep us safe.  Thank you!

 

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