Brandi Carlile announced that she has dropped out of Fortune’s Most Powerful Women Summit in Washington DC, set to take place tomorrow. Carlile announced the news via Twitter after realizing that former homeland security secretary Kirstjen Nielsen will be a speaker at the event.
She tweeted “I don’t think that human rights violators and merit-based abusers of displaced people should be given a platform to ‘reimagine’ history. Ever.” It shortly followed with “The atrocity of family separation at our Southern border needs to go down in history as one of the United States of America’s most merciless acts. Respectfully, I absolutely cannot support Kirstjen Nielsen having a voice among the most powerful and inspiring women in America. Her access to power is righteously over.” See Carlile’s full statement below.
With respect and gratitude. pic.twitter.com/rhKpRYf6gF
— Brandi Carlile (@brandicarlile) October 21, 2019
Nielsen was a leading member of the Trump administration and their immigration policy during the family separation crisis at the Mexican border. She resigned from her position in April. As of now, Nielsen’s planned summit event called “The Hard Questions,” is still taking place, according to Stereogum. Hillary Clinton and journalist Dream Hampton, executive producer the Lifetime docuseries Surviving R. Kelly pulled out of the event. Hampton had also issued a statement with the event’s decision to have Nielsen speaking at the event.
She stated, “Fortune should not be giving Kirstjen Nielsen a platform to rehabilitate her image. I’ve worked all my life to tell the stories of women, girls and families. Sharing a stage with Nielsen, who separated immigrant families and put babies in cages, would have put a stamp of approval on her immoral and reprehensible actions and help legitimize the terror that Trump is inflicting on immigrants and communities of color. So I’m cancelling my attendance and encourage other speakers to do the same.”
Photo Credit: Boston Lynn Shulz