DAVIS (CBS13) — An Iranian-American law student from Davis is working to help immigrants understand what President Donald Trump’s latest executive order means for them.
The president signed an order on Friday, banning entry into the United States for immigrants from certain Muslim countries.
UC Davis law student, Sara Ehsani-Nia, spent her weekend translating for an Iranian couple who was detained at San Francisco International Airport for three days.
“I’m incredibly grateful for the opportunities this country provides and one of those is the duty to speak up and act when there’s injustice,” she said
Sara Ehsani-Nia was one of thousands who came to the airport on Sunday, to fight for immigrant rights. A second-year law student at UC Davis and a first-generation Iranian-American, Ehsani-Nia says she knew she had to help.
“Very innocent, very normal individuals were stopped and detained,” said Ehsani-Nia.
An elderly couple visiting from Iran had been detained at SFO since Friday. Ehsani-Nia says the couple doesn’t speak English, so she stepped in and helped translate.
“They were extremely confused and they felt very helpless,” Ehsani-Nia said.
The couple told Ehsani-Nia they hadn’t seen their family in the U.S. for years, and was only coming to visit. She says she tried to calm the couple down and explained they were being detained because of Trump’s immigration ban.
Tears of sadness turned into tears of joy on Sunday after the couple was released and allowed to reunite with their family.
Their reaction was unlike anything Ehsani-Nia says she had ever seen.
“They were trembling with happiness and didn’t think this would be a realistic outcome given the three-day detention.”
A lot of tears and hugs at San Francisco International over the past weekend, as families anxiously waited and prayed their loved ones won’t be turned away.
Ehsani-Nia is involved with the Immigration Clinic here at UC Davis — she says the organization is on standby and ready to help anyone who’s been affected by President Trump’s immigration order.