Kary Moss, executive director of the ACLU of Michigan, has issued a statement urging Gov. Rick Snyder to reconsider his recent decision to back away from a plan to relocate hundreds of Syrian refugees in Michigan.

"We are deeply disappointed that our governor has announced that he would suspend his efforts to resettle refugees from Syria in Michigan, particularly at such a critical juncture. America has long prided itself on its rich history of embracing refugees fleeing from persecution and war--and we see no reason for Gov. Snyder to tarnish that legacy. Given that immigration is a federal matter over which states do not have veto power, it would violate the Constitution for any governor to bar an entire group of refugees from coming into a state because of their nationality.

We strongly urge our state’s leaders to welcome Syrian refugees who are fleeing the brutality of ISIS.  Anything less inspires Islamophobia and feeds a hateful climate  that puts Michigan residents at risk.  This is a time for Michigan to offer leadership that is brave, humane and compassionate."

Moss' was joined in her statement by Dr. Yaya Basha, a Syrian-American physician and an ACLU Advisory Board member. "It is not fair to pick on the victims of war and terrorism," said Basha. "To deny them refuge only rewards tyranny and the unconscionable violence of Isis."