Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has come out strongly against the executive order issued by Donald Trump regarding immigration and blocking certain refugees from entering the U.S. Amazon had previously expressed support for employees affected by the order in an email from HR VP Beth Galetti, but the new message from Bezos expresses opposition to the executive order in general, and also details steps Amazon has taken to fight the Trump administration measure.
Here’s the email in its entirety:
A quick update on where we are. This executive order is one we do not support. Our public policy team in D.C. has reached out to senior administration officials to make our opposition clear. We’ve also reached out to congressional leaders on both sides of the aisle to explore legislative options. Our legal team has prepared a declaration of support for the Washington State Attorney General who will be filing suit against the order. We are working other legal options as well.
We’re a nation of immigrants whose diverse backgrounds, ideas, and points of view have helped us build and invent as a nation for over 240 years. No nation is better at harnessing the energies and talents of immigrants. It’s a distinctive competitive advantage for our country—one we should not weaken.
To our employees in the U.S. and around the world who may be directly affected by this order, I want you to know that the full extent of Amazon’s resources are behind you.
We reported earlier that Amazon would be filing a declaration in support of the lawsuit being brought against Trump and his administration by Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson, which Bezos references here. After publicly criticizing Trump prior to his election, the Amazon CEO met with the then president-elect at a Silicon Valley leadership round table in December, after which he expressed some optimism about how the initial meeting with the new administration proved “very productive.”
Bezos’ new reply opposing the order was directed to Amazon’s entire staff in response to Galetti’s original email, which is included below in full.
From: Galetti, Beth
Sent: Saturday, January 28, 2017
Subject: Advisory—New Executive Order’s Potential Impact on Amazon Employees
As you may have seen in the news, the administration issued an executive order yesterday that restricts entry into the United States by foreign nationals who were born in, or are citizens of Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen, even if you hold dual citizenship with another country, US permanent residence status or a valid US work visa. US citizens are not impacted by this restriction, which will be in effect for an initial period of 90 days, and may be extended or expanded.
From the very beginning, Amazon has been committed to equal rights, tolerance and diversity—and we always will be. As we’ve grown the company, we’ve worked hard to attract talented people from all over the world, and we believe this is one of the things that makes Amazon great—a diverse workforce helps us build better products for customers.
Our immediate focus is to make sure you all have the information you need to make travel decisions in the coming days and weeks. Here’s what you need to do now if you are a citizen of any of the countries listed in the order:
- If you currently reside and/or work in the US and are present in the US today, we recommend that you refrain from travel outside of the US until further notice as you may be denied re-entry to the US for the duration of the entry restrictions;
- If you currently work/reside in the US (as a green card holder or on a valid work visa such as an H, L, E, or TN) but are traveling abroad, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. We are working on contingency plans for these employees and will be communicating with them directly;
- If you work for Amazon in another country (and are a citizen of any of the countries listed above) and have current plans to visit the US for business or personal reasons, we advise you to cancel them until the entry restrictions are lifted.
We are committed to supporting all of our employees and anyone in their immediate family who may be impacted by this order, including assistance with legal counsel and support, and will continue to monitor any developments.