#Resist Xenophobia: How We Can Make the US More Inclusive to Africans

Liz Grossman

Just a few days ago, USC’s  African Global Economic and Development Summit announced that it lost 100 attendees from Sierra Leone, Guinea, Ghana, Nigeria, Ethiopia and South Africa — 100% of its African registrants — due to refusal of visas.

In other words: a summit about development in Africa had no Africans in attendance because every single one was denied a visa.

On February 26, Nigerian engineer Celestine Omin was stopped by customs at JFK Airport and intensely questioned about his expertise and his reasons for coming to the United States. He works for Andela, a startup with operations in New York, Lagos and several other African cities, and was hired to build software for a client. Omin was only released after officials heard from senior leadership of his company.

It is clear our immigration policies will be shutting even more doors for Africans, and other targeted populations…

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