AALDEF commends the Obama Administration’s decision to dismantle NSEERS registry program
The Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund (AALDEF) praised the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s announcement that it will dismantle the discriminatory National Security Entry-Exit Registration System (NSEERS) program, which required men from 25 predominantly Muslim countries in Asia, the Middle East, and Africa to register after the 9/11 attacks. The Department of Homeland Security, which has not used NSEERS since 2011, has acknowledged that this program is “obsolete and inefficient” and “counterproductive to the Department’s comprehensive security measures.”
After 9/11, AALDEF provided legal assistance to more than 800 individuals subject to the Special Registration “call-in” provisions of NSEERS. AALDEF opposed this program since its inception, because the selective enforcement of immigration laws targeted Muslim communities based on racial and religious stereotypes and failed to enhance national security.
Margaret Fung, AALDEF executive director, said: “While AALDEF commends the government’s action to dismantle NSEERS, we will challenge any attempts by the new administration to revive a registry program that targets individuals solely on the basis of their national origin, race, ethnicity, or religious background.”
For additional information and resources on the NSEERS program and its adverse impacts on Muslim communities:
- DHS rule published in the Federal Register (effective as of Dec. 23, 2016);
- AALDEF report, Special Registration: Discrimination and Xenophobia as Government Policy(2004);
- AALDEF joint report with NYU Law School’s Center for Human Rights and Global Justice, Under the Radar: Muslims Deported, Detained, and Denied on Unsubstantiated Terrorism Allegations (2011);
- AALDEF joint report with CUNY Law School’s CLEAR Project, Mapping Muslims: NYPD Spying and its Impact on American Muslims (2013).
For more information, contact:
Annie J. Wang, Staff Attorney