US president Joe Biden has signed about 17 executive orders reversing some of the controversial policies of his predecessor, Donald Trump. Biden made the promise to rescind the executive orders that effected the Muslim ban, US’ withdrawal from the Paris Accord and the World Health Organization (WHO), on his first day in office, during his campaign.
Just hours after he was sworn in, Biden embarked on sweeping action to reverse immigration bottlenecks created by the Republican-led past administration. Though immigration experts say it would take months or longer to totally eliminate the hurdles, Biden’s swift move has been widely commended as the right step in eradicating the divisive policies that characterized Trump’s era.
Nine of the executive orders signed at a ceremony at the White House are to undo the Trump’s earlier orders, while others are new, targeted at improving American immigration system, fighting COVID-19, ensuring gender and racial indiscrimination and providing assistance to those impacted by the pandemic.
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The executive order makes the use of masks and physical distancing compulsory in federal buildings, on federal lands and by government contractors, and urges states and local governments to do the same. It is part of Biden’s planned 100 days challenge that requires use masks.
“It is required, as I said all the time, where I have the authority, to demand that masks be worn, that social distancing is maintained on federal property,” Biden said to reporters in the Oval Office.
The executive order reverses Trump’s earlier directive that severed United States’ relationship with WHO and halted her funding to the UN health body.
By this executive order, Jeff Zients was appointed the coordinator of COVID-19 Response who will report directly to the President daily on vaccine distribution, testing supplies, production and availability of personal protective equipment for healthcare workers and everything else related.
The moratorium orders are aimed at providing immediate financial aids to millions of Americans who have lost their jobs due to the pandemic. It thus extends the existing nationwide moratorium on evictions and foreclosures until at least March 31.
This extends the existing pause on student loan payments and interest for Americans with federal student loans until at least September 30.
The executive order puts the United States back into the Paris Accord, a climate agreement reached by world leaders during Obama’s era to reduce global carbon emissions and clear path for green energy.
Keystone XL pipeline
This order stops companies from drilling oil and gas on federal lands, halting construction of the Keystone XL pipeline and directs agencies to review and reverse more than 100 Trump actions on the environment.
This order reverses Trump’s administration’s 1776 Commission, and calls on federal bureaucracies to review inequalities in the way government resources are allocated.
The executive order is aimed at preventing workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.
This reverses Trump’s earlier order prohibiting undocumented immigrants from being counted during census. It thus requires non-citizens to be included in the Census and apportionment of congressional representatives.
This executive order ends Trump’s administration attempt to suspend the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) a protection programme for undocumented people brought into the country as children. It will thus stop the ICE from carrying out the ‘separation of children from their parents’ policy issued by Trump.
By this order, Biden asks Congress to pass a law that will provide an eight-year path to citizenship for those protected by DACA.
Biden signed executive that repealed Trump administration’s notorious visa ban on seven Muslim-majority countries and some African countries.
Biden signed an order halting construction of the border wall by repealing the national emergency declaration used to fund it. Trump issued the order in 2018 to divert money other projects to fund the wall’s construction.
This order extends deferrals of deportation and work authorizations for Liberians with a safe haven in the United States until June 30, 2022, a program that Trump repeatedly tried to end.
Biden signed an executive order that obligates everyone working in his administration to sign an ethics pledge barring them from acting in personal interest and requiring them to uphold the independence of the Department of Justice.
By this executive order, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) director is required to repeal regulatory process under Trump and develop recommendations to modernize approval process.