Trump’s Ban On Travel Gets Diverse Responses From Silicon Valley

Trump’s ban on travel was the worst hit among all of the recent times. It has shaken up not just the masses at large but also the big corporations who’ve hired them. In what follows as one of the greatest protests against the government, it was Meryl Streep who’d spoken up earlier, but now the big companies and their CEOs have openly joined the protests.

Here are a few of the major personalities who have joined the protest because some of them are “refugees” themselves

Sergey Brin, Co-founder of Google

He joined the protestors at San Francisco International Airport. When The Verge approached him, he said that he would not comment as he was there “in a personal capacity.” Needless to say, we can see that he has associated closely with the issue.

Talking to other media personnel, he did say “I’m here because I’m a refugee.” Brin’s family moved in from the Soviet Union in 1979 to escape the Jewish persecution. Sundar Pichai, the CEO of Google is also an immigrant.

Uber on Trump’s ban on travel

Just like other Silicon Valley companies, Uber too has a lot many legal immigrants working for it. Thus, Uber’s CEO Travis Kalanick posted a Facebook update expressing his concerns:

This afternoon I sent the email below to Uber employees and thought I would include here:Subject: Standing up for what…

Posted by Travis Kalanick on Saturday, 28 January 2017

The company pledged to compensate the drivers that are stuck overseas, saying “this ban will impact innocent people.”

Tim Cook, CEO of Apple

Cook took notice after his employees got worried about Trump’s ban on travel. After a meeting at the Washington, DC, he put a memo on for his team which apparently read: “Apple would not exist without immigration.”

He went on to say that “it is not a policy we support.” He stated that they’d gone to DC to explain adverse impacts of the policy on their company and co-workers. How things pan out is yet to be seen.[quotes quotes_style=”bquotes” quotes_pos=”center”]

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.”


Reed Hastings, CEO of Netflix

Reed Hastings has probably expressed the most genuine concerns among all his peers. He said “[Trump’s immigration ban] is so un-American it pains us all.” He updated a Facebook status where he wrote a lengthy banter about the same. You can read his full statement below:

Trump's actions are hurting Netflix employees around the world, and are so un-American it pains us all. Worse, these…

Posted by Reed Hastings on Saturday, 28 January 2017

Microsoft’s concern

The concerns Microsoft has are entirely legitimate. Apple has expressed the same views. Microsoft too issued a memo to its employees, in which it stated that it would provide “legal advice and assistance.”

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With 76 employees being from Sudan, Syria, Somalia, Libya and Yemen, the company’s note has directly come from the Corporate, External and Legal Affairs Team (CLEA). Microsoft has assured its employees that it would continue to advocate these issues strongly.

Also Read: Google Co-founder Sergey Brin Protest Against Trump’s Immigration Ban

Elon Musk on Trump’s ban on travel

Elon Musk took to Twitter to express that the immigrants “don’t deserve to be rejected.”

He said vocalizing the thoughts of many that this “may not be the best way to address the country’s challenges.”

Jack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter

Dorsey said “Twitter is built by immigrants” and that the impact of this new ban is “real and upsetting”

Zuckerberg’s Weak Reaction

Zuckerberg said that he was only “concerned” about the executive orders. But at the same time, he said he was “glad” that the country was taking talents only from America. His reaction was politically correct reflecting his political ambitions. He expressed no further regret for the inconvenience of his staff.

Intel’s Support

Intel announced that it “continues to support lawful immigration.” The company said that an immigrant co-founded the company and hence the cause affects them dearly. They mentioned that they would “provide full support” to the potentially affected employees. Whether or not they shall be providing legal support to the employees remained in question.

Salesforce calls the move ‘shameful.’

Salesforce board member Bret Taylor called it ‘shameful’ saying that this move has made permanent members separated from families. Students are unable to return to their schools, and he pointed out. He attached a post to it.

CEO of Salesforce, Butterfield also posted several tweets which were rather lengthy on Twitter to protest against this ban.

Amazon’s response

Amazon’s response was not too loud, although it mentioned that a strict “contingency plan” would be held out for the employees (who are affected). The VP’s letter to their team was about “equal rights, tolerance, and diversity.” The letter went on to mention how the company has always valued diversity and that it believes that it has attracted some of the most talented people from all over the world. One can clearly see how the company failed to mention about the response to Trump’s ban on travel.

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