Hundreds of Salesforce employees are demanding the company “re-examine” its contract with Customs and Border Protection (CPB) and “speak out against” its “inhumane” practices of enforcing immigration laws.
“We want our work at Salesforce to have a positive impact on our friends and neighbors, not to make us complicit in the inhumane treatment of vulnerable people,” the employees wrote in an open-letter to CEO Marc Benioff, first reported by Bloomberg on Monday.
Salesforce is a San Francisco-based cloud computing company that specializes in customer relationship management products.
CBP uses Salesforce Community Cloud and Analytics for recruiting new agents and supporting them in the field “to drive efficiencies around U.S. border activities,” according to a press release on March 6.
“In this competitive hiring environment, it is critical for law enforcement agencies to embrace new technologies as a tool for accomplishing their mission—and CBP is no exception,” CBP Office of Human Resource Management Assistant Commissioner Linda Jacksta said in the press release. “We are committed to investing in innovative technologies and solutions, such as Salesforce, to improve our business in the most cost-effective and efficient manner possible.”
Regarding the Salesforce employees’ open-letter, a spokesperson told The Daily Caller News Foundation in an email on Tuesday, “One of the greatest things about being part of the Salesforce family is that we proudly foster an open exchange of ideas and dialogue. We’re proud of our employees for being passionate and vocal, and will continue the conversation on this and other important matters.”
Employees of other tech giants like Microsoft and Amazon have also written open-letters to their CEOs asking them to end their direct contracts with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) or contracts they have with other companies who have contracts with ICE.
In an open-letter to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos on Friday, Amazon employees compared assisting ICE to assisting Adolf Hitler with the Holocaust, pointing to IBM’s contract with the Nazis. Experts estimate that IBM directly supplied technology to the Nazis that assisted in the operation of the Auschwitz and Treblinka concentration camps, The Independent reports. (RELATED: Amazon Employees Say ICE Contract Is Like Assisting Hitler With The Holocaust)
“We learn from history, and we understand how IBM’s systems were employed in the 1940s to help Hitler,” the Amazon employees’ letter reads. “IBM did not take responsibility then, and by the time their role was understood, it was too late. We will not let that happen again.“
More than 100 Microsoft employees were more restrained in their dissatisfaction with the company’s relationship with ICE, simply stating in an open-letter to CEO Satya Nadella on June 19 that they wish the company would cut all ties with ICE and with other companies that have contracts with them.
“[W]e ask that Microsoft cancel its contracts with U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Immediately, including contract with clients who support ICE,” the employees’ demands states. “We also call on Microsoft to draft, publicize, and enforce a clear policy stating that neither Microsoft nor its contractors will work with clients who violate international human rights law.” (RELATED: Microsoft Employees Not Satisfied With Executives’ ‘Shallow’ Response To ICE Concerns)
Salesforce employees seemingly contradictorily state that the now-former policy of placing children in separate holding areas away from adults who could potentially be human traffickers is both occurring and not occurring at the same time. President Donald Trump ended the policy in an executive order on June 20.
“Given the inhumane separation of children from their parents currently taking place at the border, we believe that our core value of Equality is at stake,” Salesforce employees wrote.
They later added in the same letter: “We recognize the explicit policy of separating children at the border has been stopped, but that simply returns us to a status quo of detaining children with their parents at the border.”
A Salesforce spokesperson clarified to TheDCNF that its services are not being used by immigration enforcement authorities for the separation of families.
“We believe every human life has equal value and every person must be treated with dignity and respect. We are not working with U.S. Customs and Border Protection regarding the separation of families at the border. And we are not aware of any Salesforce services being used by CBP for this purpose,” the spokesperson told TheDCNF in an email Tuesday.
The policy was in place to protect children from adults that don’t have proper documentation from being abducted by human traffickers, which is especially present at the southern border.
“We have a statutory responsibility that we take seriously to protect alien children from human smuggling, trafficking and other criminal actions while enforcing our immigration laws,” Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen said on June 18 in a statement, before the policy ended. “We also separate a parent and child if the adult is suspected of human trafficking.”
Trump’s executive order allows children caught with parents illegally crossing the border to be held in the same detainment area.
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