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REI CEO Condemns Trump’s Immigration Ban

“We are an organization, and a country, built on inclusion.”

Photo: REI

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Following President Trump’s executive order on immigration for citizens of predominantly Muslim countries last Friday, a number of international companies including Apple, Starbucks, and Google have issued statements condemning the order. Meanwhile, most major fashion brands (save for Nike) have stayed silent thus far.

On Monday, however, REI CEO Jerry Stritzke sent a letter to his co-op employees that made his stance on the ban perfectly clear; this morning, the outdoor retailer posted the full memo on its website.

“Over the course of the first week alone, we’ve witnessed actions that conflict with our co-op values on issues including climate, the environment, women’s rights and the singling out of individuals based on nationality and belief,” Stritzke writes. “These issues are core to the health of the outdoors and the ideals of our nation.”

“We are an organization, and a country, built on inclusion,” he continues. “We believe we are better when we come together, when we are open and when we are welcoming. Accordingly, we do not support the executive order issued by the President on Friday regarding immigration. I have reached out personally to all employees currently in the immigration process to ensure they have the support they need.”

You can read the full memo here. But the question remains: Will Stritzke’s public condemnation of Trump’s latest incendiary action inspires other retail CEOs to raise their voices as well? And, perhaps more importantly, will loyal shoppers see these sorts of statements and turn them into action?