Software Freedom Conservancy Opposes U.S. Presidential Executive Order on Immigration
January 30, 2017
The free software movement is, at its core, a social justice movement. Software freedom is essential for people to be confident their technology works in service to equality, justice, and democracy, and not as a tool for the privileged and the powerful to quash those values.
For this movement to succeed, it must welcome people from all nations and religions. If people are excluded from our work, what we build will fail to meet their needs. As much as we’re able, Conservancy strives to make free and open source software development accessible to people around the globe. We help our member projects organize conferences in many different countries. And our member project Outreachy provides internship and mentorship opportunities in countries that are thus far underrepresented in FOSS development.
Moreover, we house dozens of member projects that develop free and open source software and do so on a global scale. Their developers live around the world, collaborating thanks to licenses that give them equal rights to work on the software. In-person conferences are crucial to their work, providing important opportunities for focused development and community-building. Many of those developers have found employment in the U.S., enriching the economy and the world. Prohibiting arbitrary groups from traveling to the U.S. destroys these opportunities. It exacerbates the very inequalities that free software strives against.
Diversity and inclusion are core Conservancy values. The travel ban in President Trump’s recent executive order runs wholly counter to those values. We oppose it in its entirety, and support its full reversal.