Joe Biden's busy first week: Seven big changes for America in the president's first days in office

Credit: AP

President Joe Biden has had a busy first week in the White House, undoing many of the Trump administration's actions and putting in place their own agenda.

The list is long, but here's a roundup of the seven major changes made in just seven days.

Action on Covid

After a famously laid back approach to the Covid-19 crisis from Donald Trump, the Biden administration has gone in hard on action to help tackle the pandemic.

The very first executive order signed was to mandate mask wearing on federal property.

Joe Biden is regularly seen in a mask Credit: Nicole Hester/Ann Arbor News via AP

President Biden is also directing the government to rejoin the World Health Organization (WHO) - which Mr Trump withdrew from earlier this year.

The Covid travel ban has also been reinstated - including for travellers from the UK - in an attempt to limit the spread of the virus.

A newly-installed coronavirus response coordinator will oversee the White House's efforts to distribute vaccines and medical supplies and report directly to the president.

Senior aides to the new president have already started talks with Republicans and Democrats over a $1.9 trillion (£1.4 trillion) coronavirus relief package.

The return of Dr Fauci and listening to scientific advice

Dr Anthony Fauci - America's leading Covid adviser, somewhat sidelined by the Trump administration - is back.

In his first appearance in Biden's White House, Dr Fauci said is was "liberating" to be able to let the science speak once more without fearing "repercussions".

As the country's top infectious diseases expert, his reappearance signals the Biden administration's commitment to following the science during the pandemic.

Dr Fauci said it was 'liberating' to be able to talk freely about science under Joe Biden's administration. Credit: AP

Reversing Trump's Muslim travel ban

One of Mr Trump's first and most controversial acts as president, the "travel ban" or "Muslim ban", is to be reversed.

In January 2017 Mr Trump banned foreign nationals - including refugees - from seven, mostly Muslim countries, from entering the US.

The new administration says it will improve the screening of visitors by strengthening information sharing with foreign governments and other measures.

Protests after Donald Trump ordered a travel ban on people from seven Muslim-majority countries. Credit: PA

Review into domestic terrorism

In light of the deadly January 6 riots in the US Capitol, led by Trump supporters, the Biden administration has directed the US intelligence community to study the threat of domestic extremism.

At the time, Mr Biden urged people to call the group "domestic terrorists" rather than protesters.


When he entered office, Mr Trump - a supporter of oil, gas and coal - made pulling out of global efforts to cut climate-damaging fossil fuel emissions a first priority.

In June 2017, the US withdrew from the Paris Accord - a global climate change deal.

Just over three years later, the US is set to rejoin with President Biden already signing an order re-entering the country into the deal.

Trump supporter Senator Ted Cruz criticised the move, writing that President Biden had indicated that he is more interested "in the views of the citizens of Paris than in the jobs of the citizens of Pittsburgh."

The deal is labelled the Paris Accord because it was signed in Paris.

Transgender military ban reversed

After an election campaign where discussions of LGBT+ rights and issues were largely absent, President Biden was quick to reverse Mr Trump's ban on transgender people serving in the US military

In October ITV News spoke to Dana Delgardo, a former US Air Force Major, about the impact of Trump's transgender military ban

The former president announced the policy in a tweet in July 2017, devastating the lives of many who served in the military.

President Biden's order immediately prohibits any service member from being forced out of the military on the basis of gender identity.

Border wall

Throughout his 2016 election campaign Mr Trump promised to make Mexico pay for his proposed "impenetrable and beautiful" border wall between the two countries.

The Trump administration declared a national emergency on the border in February 2018 to divert billions of dollars from the Defense Department towards wall construction.

Donald Trump visits a new section of the border wall with Mexico in Calexico, California Credit: AP

In his first week in office, President Biden immediately called an end to the national emergency.

US Customs and Border Protection says Americans have already committed $15 billion for more than 700 miles (1,120 kilometres).

It is unclear how many miles are under contract and what penalties the government would have to pay for cancelling them.