9 Pro-Refugee Groups Standing Up To Trump's Ban

The ACLU isn't the only organization doing important work.

For HuffPost’s #LoveTakesAction series, we’re telling stories of how people are standing up to hate and supporting those most threatened. What will you stand up for? Tell us with #LoveTakesAction.

Donors raised an unprecedented amount of money for the American Civil Liberties Union over the weekend in response to President Donald Trump’s anti-immigrant executive order. Advocates on social media are also encouraging supporters to help pro-refugee groups that don’t have the same marketing prowess and visibility as big-name organizations.

The executive order, which Trump signed Friday, bans all refugees from entering the United States for 120 days and blocks Syrian refugees indefinitely. Additionally, the order prevents travel to the U.S. from seven predominantly Muslim countries ― Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen ― for 90 days.

Demonstrators against Trump's Muslim ban come together for a second day of protests at Los Angeles International Airport on S
Demonstrators against Trump's Muslim ban come together for a second day of protests at Los Angeles International Airport on Sunday.

The order inspired massive protests across the country over the weekend and prompted a wave of donations to human rights and civil liberties groups. The ACLU, which on Saturday won a temporary stay in federal court on parts of Trump’s refugee ban, received $24 million online.

Here are some of the other groups working to protect refugees and vulnerable immigrants in the U.S.:

The BAJI is devoted to helping immigrants from Africa, the Caribbean and Latin America organize to fight for racial justice. Its Black Immigration Network project connects organizations that advocate for fairer immigration policies for these communities.

“Our values state that we will offer safety and refuge to the oppressed, but this week’s Executive Actions betray those promises,” BAJI wrote on Facebook last week. “The Black Alliance for Just Immigration condemns the Administration’s regressive policies and we stand together to resist hate!”

A coalition of advocates and organizations, the Detention Watch Network works to advance the civil and human rights of people affected by the immigration detention system.

“We reject Trump’s anti-immigrant and islamophobic vision for this country,” the group said in a statement last week. “Led by immigrants and people of color, we stand resolutely in the fight to make our vision of inclusivity, dignity and freedom a reality.”

The UBN works to bring stories of black undocumented people to the forefront of the American immigrant narrative. Founded in 2016, the group has established a network of advocates to elevate these stories and provide resources to the community.

“We will not stand for this,” UBN wrote on Facebook last week. “An attack on some of us is an attack on all of us!”


The HIAS rescues refugees who have been persecuted and forced to flee their homes. The organization works to relocate vulnerable refugees and unite them with family members, when possible, and ensures displaced people are treated with dignity. 

“History has taught us the deadly consequences of slamming the doors of this country shut on people just because of who they are and where they are from,” the HIAS’ Rachel Nusbaum wrote in a blog post on the organization’s website. “We must prevent this administration from repeating the mistakes of the past.” 

Through a combination of litigation and advocacy work, the Center for Constitutional Rights fights a range of refugee-specific issues, including abusive immigration practices and Muslim profiling. 

“Trump’s executive order targeting immigrants by expanding brutal detention policies is immoral, costly, and destructive,” the group said last week. “Trump’s actions represent a betrayal of our most important political, moral, and constitutional values.”

The Young Center for Immigrant Children’s Rights supports unaccompanied immigrant children fleeing political upheaval, extreme poverty, child labor and other crises by helping them navigate the immigration system. 

The group issued the following statement regarding Trump’s executive order:

The Young Center ... remains committed to ensuring decisions about immigration policy—which have a far reaching impact on the safety of children, both immigrant and non-immigrant—are based on fact and reflect the American value of caring for, protecting and treasuring children. That they do not turn on stereotypes, bias, or ignorance. That immigrant children are recognized first as children. And that no decisions should be made about children that do not consider their best interests—their safety and well-being, informed by their wishes.

The Muslim Advocates group fights for freedom for people of all faiths by combatting discrimination and hate crimes and educating communities about their legal rights. 

“The executive action signed by President Trump is only one step in what will be a continued assault on religious liberty and on American Muslims,” Farhana Khera, executive director of Muslim Advocates, said in a statement over the weekend.

The International Rescue Committee supports people whose lives have been devastated by conflict. In response to Trump’s executive order, the IRC has launched its first-ever emergency appeal focusing exclusively on immigrants who are already in the U.S. in anticipation of the funding gaps that will likely arise as a result of the new policy. 

“America has the strongest, most successful resettlement program in the world,” said IRC President and CEO David Miliband. “Certified by successive administrations, the U.S. resettlement program makes it harder to get to the United States as a refugee than any other route. This is one of many reasons to deplore the hasty decision made today.”

A network composed of more than 100,000 immigrant youths and supporters, United We Dream advocates for the fair treatment of young immigrant, fights for access to higher education and works to stop deportations of undocumented youth and their parents, among other initiatives. 

“Our communities are resilient and are organized to fight back,” the group said in a statement in response to Trump’s executive order. “An attack on one of us is an attack on all of us. Women, immigrants, black people, LGBTQ people and working people are united in fighting back and building community together. Since the election of Donald Trump, we have marched together, organized and we are just getting started.”

This story has been updated to include the Black Alliance for Just Immigration and the UndocuBlack Network.

For HuffPost’s #LoveTakesAction series, we’re telling stories of how people are standing up to hate and supporting those most threatened. What will you stand up for? Tell us with #LoveTakesAction.



Nationwide Protests Against Trump's Executive Order