Travel Ban Report Released by Homeland Security Watchdog after Groups File Records Appeal

WASHINGTON – Open the Government (OTG) and the Project on Government Oversight (POGO) applauded the release today of a report by the Homeland Security Administration’s Inspector General that critiqued the Trump Administration’s handling of its controversial travel ban that caused chaos and protests across the nation in January 2017. The release of the redacted report came just two days after OTG and POGO filed an appeal after their Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to access the report it was blocked.

“This is a huge win for transparency and for the public’s right to know about how the travel ban was implemented on the ground,” said Open the Government’s Executive Director Lisa Rosenberg. “The release of the report is a testament to the pressure from the public and Congress to ensure accountability by bringing the full truth into the light of day. We are continuing to call on the administration to release information still being withheld on this policy, and account for the continued secrecy related to this report.” 

A day after filing the appeal, the DHS OIG quietly posted a redacted version of the report on its website, providing no explanation for the redactions or for the initial FOI denial. The DHS also failed to indicate the justification for the withholdings, in apparent violation of the FOIA. Read more...