Photo by: Usembassykyiv 

On his first day in office, President Joe Biden has signed a total of seventeen executive orders. Executive orders are mandatory requirements for the Executive branch. They are passed by the president along with congress. These new orders range from immigration to environmental issues. Many of these orders are rebuttals to Trump’s previous orders.

 

COVID-19 Pandemic

  • President Biden is now requiring face masks to be worn and social distancing to be mandated on federal property. To prevent the spread of Coronavirus in the country, Biden has begun a “100 days mask challenge”. With this decision, he hopes to have local officials around the country apply these measures. 

  • He has also now begun restoring ties with the World Health Organization, which Trump had previously withdrawn funding in 2020. Dr. Fauci, a physician and an advisor for the last seven presidents, is now the head of the U.S. delegation to the organization’s executive board and starts work this week.

 

Immigration

  • After Trump had hoped to end the DACA program (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals), President Biden signed an order to strengthen it on his first day in office. This protects young adults who were brought into the country at young ages from being deported. This order is going to involve congress to enact legislation and provide a stable and permanent plan so they can work their way to citizenship.

  • Another order that was signed states that non-citizens will now be counted in the census. 

  • Trump had previously pushed an order that made strong efforts to find and deport undocumented immigrants as soon as possible and Biden will end this.

  • The Muslim Travel Ban has been lifted. Trump had placed this ban on travel from countries with a high Muslim population in 2017. Visa processing will now start up again to help those who were harmed or blocked from the country.

  • Trump's notorious motto, “Build the wall” will finally be words of the past as Biden halted the construction of the wall on the southern border. The Trump administration had redirected billions of dollars to fund this process and this will be under review.

  • The final order that was placed under this category is the deportation blockage of Liberians who live in the United States.

 

Climate Change

  • President Biden has signed a letter that lets the United States reenter the Paris Climate Agreement. This involves two hundred countries that are trying to lessen global warming by stopping the use of fossil fuels, coal mining, and oil drilling. It first began in 2016 and Donald Trump decided to leave it in early 2017. The U.S. will join thirty days from today (January 20).

  • President Biden has begun the process of reversing Trump’s administration policies surrounding the environment. This includes stopping the oil and gas leases in the Arctic National Refuge, establishing a new group to work on the costs of greenhouse gasses, and stopping the work on the Keystone XL pipeline.

 

Racial Equality

  • President Biden has ended the Trump Administration's 1776 commission. This was Trump’s way to increase “patriotic education” but historians say this skewed slavery and other important events in U.S. history. 

  • Biden revoked Trump’s executive order that limited the ability of institutions to hold diversity and more inclusive training. 

  • Susan E. Rice is the leader of an effort requiring all federal agencies to make “rooting out systemic racism” central to their work. This is working to remove barriers to opportunities in different organizations. This order has also made sure that every citizen of all backgrounds has equal access to federal government resources and benefits.

 

LGBTQ Equality

  • Another executive order will enforce Title VII of the Civil Rights Act to require that all federal government positions/ people do not discriminate on the basis of both sexual orientation and identity. This also is a reversed action of Trump’s administration.

 

Economy

  • Biden is continuing the pause of federal student loan interest through the month of September. The Democratic Party is pushing to cancel up to $50,000 in student debt per person, but we have not heard more about this topic.

 

Governmental Accountability

  • Biden has established a new ethics rule among the administration in order to restore trust in the government. All of his appointees in the Executive branch are to sign an Ethics Pledge.

  • Lastly, President Biden has frozen all new regulations that Trump had put in motion in his last days in office. The administration is now going over them to see if he wants any to be passed. 

 

If this is everything he did on the first day we can only imagine what he will do in the next four years. President Joe Biden has said he wanted to get straight to work and there was no time to waste. 

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