MAP: Colleges react to new EO with 'immigration response teams'
College administrators across the country are pouring resources into combating the Trump administration, most recently by establishing “immigration response” teams in reaction to the revised executive order on immigration.
University of Minnesota President Eric Kaler, for instance recently announced in his “State of the University” address that he would be forming an “immigration response team” to ensure “that all who are affected by any immigration policy changes will have a clear and accessible path to resources and support.”
Kaler went on to note that he would even be willing to reallocate funding and staff in order to adequately “support this important work” on an as-needed basis.
“The Provost and I are committed to identifying resources, including a dedicated website and reallocating staff and funding as needed, to support this important work,” he added, telling his students to “look for further announcements” as he works “urgently to get this team in place.”
University of California, Los Angeles Chancellor Gene Block announced a similar initiative last week, informing students that he would be “forming the Chancellor’s Immigration Advisory Council to analyze the impact of new policies” while recommending “strategies for mitigating any negative consequences” of President Trump’s revised executive order.
“I and the rest of my leadership team are very concerned about the policy’s impact on our institutional mission, and on all of us—our colleagues, our friends, and our families,” he remarked in a statement, asserting that the “immigration executive order clashed with the university's’ core values.”
Meanwhile, Dartmouth College has established an “Immigration Working Group” to “identify needs of Dartmouth students, faculty, and staff in the face of changing federal policies regarding immigration-related matters,” with more than 30 full-time administrators and faculty serving on the committee.
Taking the concept a step further, Swarthmore College now has a “Sanctuary Campus Working Group,” which will “serve in an advisory capacity” to the school’s president by recommending “policies, resources, and services designed to provide for the safety and sanctuary of undocumented” students.
Specifically, the working group will assess the recommendations put forward in recent student and faculty resolutions on the matter, promising to address the “areas of financial support, legal support, and student life resources and advising.”
New York University, meanwhile, has already promised to provide an abundance of legal resources to illegal students under its new “Immigrant Defense Initiative,” which will offer legal counsel for students at risk of deportation “based on possible immigration violations, contact with the criminal legal system, or other concerns.”
NYU law faculty will provide students with “initial screenings,” after which students and staff “with cases suitable for pro bono representation will be referred to WilmerHale for possible representation and advocacy.”
Northland College’s “Diversity Work Group” has “formed a subcommittee,” which will “both respond to the evolving needs of undocumented members of [its] community” while addressing “the additional recommendations that student and faculty have already presented.”
Finally, the University of Colorado announced last week the establishment of a similar “working group” with a “charge to address impacts, provide acute support, and anticipate future potential needs of [its] international community,” noting that it will be “meeting weekly” to collaborate on such efforts.
Campus Reform will continue to update this story as similar committees are developed.
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