EY (formerly Ernst & Young) CEO Mark Weinberger emailed employees Monday about President Donald Trump’s immigration ban, saying it would affect the company’s “ability to work as a globally connected organisation,” and offered help to any employees affected.
On Friday, Trump signed an executive order that barred immigrants from seven Muslim-majority nations labelled as security threats from entering the United States.
EY, as one of the world’s largest accounting firms, has roughly 250,000 employees globally, and Weinberger is one of the 19 members of Trump’s business advisory council, the Strategic and Policy Forum. The president will be meeting for the first time with the council on Friday.
In his statement, Weinberger did not outright condemn the president’s executive order, but said that EY was committed to “a diverse and inclusive culture” and that national security efforts must be balanced with being “an open and free country that recognises, and cherishes, the value of all people, including immigrants.”
Weinberger’s statement is below. A version of it was emailed to employees on Monday, along with resources for those who were affected by the ban. The company would not comment on how many employees may have been affected.
“The Executive Order issued by President Trump last week to re-evaluate the US visa issuance process and US Refugee Admission Program will have an impact on our ability to work as a globally connected organisation. We communicated yesterday to all of EY’s quarter of a million people around the world that we are working through the implications of this order and stand ready to assist any impacted employees.
“We also restated our commitment to being globally connected and to supporting our EY people around the world. The strength of EY lies in our people, values and culture, all of which are built on a foundation of respect for all individuals. We have worked hard as an organisation to build a culture that values differences across all backgrounds, geographies and faiths. This commitment to a diverse and inclusive culture remains steadfast. It gives confidence to all our people that they belong as part of our EY family.
“Efforts to strengthen national security, which underlie the Executive Order, are important and must be balanced with the commitment to being an open and free country that recognises, and cherishes, the value of all people, including immigrants. That is the only certain way to achieve sustainable economic and physical security. We need to work together to achieve this balance and have a productive dialogue, informed by what we are hearing around the world. We commit to engage fully in this dialogue.”
Other members of Trump’s business advisory council who have issued responses to the ban, ranging from wary to critical, include JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick, and SpaceX and Tesla CEO Elon Musk.
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