Apple CEO Tim Cook Sends Email to Employees About Trump’s Refugee Ban

In the wake of executive orders from U.S. President Donald Trump limiting immigration from a group of seven countries, Apple CEO Tim Cook has written to employees to reaffirm the company’s pro-immigration stance.

In the email, Cook said that staff will receive support from its human resources and legal teams. On Friday, Trump signed an executive order to suspend visa entry from seven Muslim-majority countries, until tougher vetting procedures are put in place. Refugees in the affected countries, which include Iran, Iraq, Syria, Sudan, Somalia, Yemen, and Libya, will be prevented from entering the United States for a 90-day period and then even after extreme vetting.

The ban applies to green card and H-1B visa holders, as well as to individuals maintaining dual-citizenship in one of the named countries. In a statement, Trump said:

“I am establishing new vetting measures to keep radical Islamic terrorists out of the United States. We want to ensure that we are not admitting into our country the very threats our soldiers are fighting overseas.”

Noting the importance of immigration to Apple, Tim Cook writes in the email that he has heard from a number of employees about the executive order, advising he shares their concerns and that “it is not a policy we support.”

Employees directly affected by the immigration order have been contacted by Apple’s human resources, legal, and security teams, with Cook pledging the company’s support. Resources on Apple’s company-wide communications system are being provided to further explain Apple’s immigration policies.

You can read Tim Cook’s full email below:


In my conversations with officials here in Washington this week, I’ve made it clear that Apple believes deeply in the importance of immigration —both to our company and to our nation’s future. Apple would not exist without immigration, let alone thrive and innovate the way we do.

I’ve heard from many of you who are deeply concerned about the executive order issued yesterday restricting immigration from seven Muslim-majority countries. I share your concerns. It is not a policy we support.

There are employees at Apple who are directly affected by yesterday’s immigration order. Our HR, Legal and Security teams are in contact with them, and Apple will do everything we can to support them. We’re providing resources on AppleWeb for anyone with questions or concerns about immigration policies. And we have reached out to the White House to explain the negative effect on our coworkers and our company.

As I’ve said many times, diversity makes our team stronger. And if there’s one thing I know about the people at Apple, it’s the depth of our empathy and support for one another. It’s as important now as it’s ever been, and it will not weaken one bit. I know I can count on all of you to make sure everyone at Apple feels welcome, respected and valued.

Apple is open. Open to everyone, no matter where they come from, which language they speak, who they love or how they worship. Our employees represent the finest talent in the world, and our team hails from every corner of the globe.

In the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, “We may have all come on different ships, but we are in the same boat now.”


Apple founder and CEO Steve Jobs was the son of a Syrian immigrant to the U.S.

[via BuzzFeed]

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