Alexandria, Va., USA - The International and American Associations for Dental Research (IADR/AADR) strongly oppose the executive order “Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry Into the United States” and specifically the provision that suspends entry into the United States for immigrants and nonimmigrants from Iran, Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Sudan, Somalia and Libya for 90 days.
Although we do not know the full impact of this policy yet, the executive order could have a chilling effect on the global scientific community and will impair IADR and AADR’s ability to achieve its mission of advancing research and increasing knowledge for the improvement of oral health worldwide. Science is, and must be, an international collaborative endeavor. Suspending entry into the United States prevents faculty and students with visas from these countries to study, teach, research, or attend international scientific conferences and this is a disservice to the advancement of science. The executive order will also prevent faculty and students from these countries currently in the United States on valid visas from traveling to international scientific conferences outside of the United States for fear of not being able to return.
IADR has members and student members based in the countries included in the executive order and members and student members with passports from those countries with faculty appointments or who are students in other countries. The direct and immediate impact on these members (even if they already obtained visas and went through a rigorous visa interview process) is they will be unable to attend the IADR General Session in San Francisco, California scheduled for March 2017. The IADR General Session is the largest scientific conference in the world for dental, oral and craniofacial researchers to share, connect and learn more about the latest dental and craniofacial research findings.
We strongly urge Congress to rescind the executive order immediately through the legislative process. We look forward to working with policymakers in the near future so they can better understand the detrimental impact policies such as this have on the exchange of information and the scientific enterprise at large.
As we strive towards our mission, IADR and AADR are committed to our diverse membership and will always be an inclusive community of dental, oral and craniofacial researchers for membership, meetings and our publications.
About the International and American Associations for Dental Research
The International Association for Dental Research (IADR) is a nonprofit organization with nearly 11,000 individual members worldwide, dedicated to: (1) advancing research and increasing knowledge for the improvement of oral health worldwide, (2) supporting and representing the oral health research community, and (3) facilitating the communication and application of research findings. To learn more, visit www.iadr.org. The American Association for Dental Research (AADR) is the largest Division of IADR, with more than 3,500 members in the United States. To learn more, visit www.aadr.org.