Letters of Support

A Message from the UO President:

Statement on DACA and support for students

September 4, 2017

Members of the University of Oregon community,

President Trump this week is expected to make changes to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals immigration policy, also known as DACA. I join hundreds of university leaders as well as local, state, federal, and business leaders in strongly urging President Trump to continue this program. I also write to let our students know that we support them, and to provide information about where our students and their families can go for assistance, should the need arise.

In a world full of ambiguities, there is no ambiguity for me about the importance of continuing DACA. My view of morality dictates that young people, many of whom were brought here as infants or toddlers, must be allowed to remain in the United States to learn, work, and make a life for themselves. The United States is their home. To uproot them would be wrong. Period.

But the argument for DACA doesn’t just rest on principles of morality; it is also good for our country. One of the reasons the United States became the greatest nation in the world is because it was founded, built, and shaped by immigrants. Millions and millions of people, including all of my grandparents, risked everything to come to the United States to escape religious, ethnic, and political oppression or to seek out a better life for their children. The very act of coming here showed grit and determination, the willingness to assume risk, and courage—just the skills necessary to build our nation.

The future of our nation’s economic prosperity also depends upon embracing immigrants and making sure that they are educated to become productive citizens and positive contributors to the economy. Birthrates are declining among our country’s native-born, and immigrants currently make up about 13 percent of the workforce. To uproot young immigrants from their schools and jobs or to force them into the shadows is the equivalent of shooting ourselves in our collective feet.

Regardless of what happens in our nation’s capital, I want to again make very clear that the University of Oregon supports every student, regardless of immigration status. Every person on our campus is valued and welcomed because of and not despite their diversity of thought, race, culture, background, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation, and birthplace. Our many differences enrich this institution’s learning environment, enhance the student experience, and are essential to our mission of teaching, research, and service.

As is currently our practice, the UO will continue to protect the privacy of students, follow the law, and treat every member of campus with respect and inclusion. This means:

  • The University of Oregon will not facilitate immigration enforcement on our campus without legal compulsion, such as in the form of a warrant or a clear demonstration of exigent circumstances such as the imminent risk to the health or safety of others;
  • The University of Oregon Police Department will not act on behalf of federal officials in enforcing immigration laws;
  • The University of Oregon will not share with immigration enforcement any information on the immigration status of students unless required by court order.

The university is reaching out directly to students who may be impacted by the president’s decision to provide them with information about support and services. Several important points of contact and sources of information will continue to be updated as needed in the coming days and weeks:

  • For current information on the status of DACA and frequently asked questions about immigration issues, please see the Immigration FAQ webpage.
  • Justine Carpenter, director of Multicultural and Identity-Based Support Services, is the campus point-person in support of undocumented and DACA students, Carpenter and can be reached at 541-346-1123 or justcarp@uoregon.edu
  • For additional information on the UO’s support for DACA students, please visit the UO DREAMers Workgroup website.
  • Should an immigration official ask for information about a UO student, employee, or visiting scholar, please immediately contact the Office of the General Counsel at 541-346-3082 or gcounsel@uoregon.edu.

In the coming weeks and months, I urge everyone in our community to reach out and embrace those students who now face the uncertainty of knowing whether they will be able to remain in the United States. As I have repeated on many occasions—we are a family. Families take care of each other, and we will do everything in our power to ensure that all of our students are supported.

Thank you.

Michael H. Schill
President and Professor of Law

En Español
Mandarin – 關於童年入境暫緩遣返計劃的聲明暨致學生聲援書

Vietnamese – Lời phát biểu về DACA và sự hỗ trợ cho sinh viên

CLLAS Stands with DACA

In light of the recent decision from the Trump administration to rescind the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals immigration policy, also known as DACA, CLLAS joins the multiple voices across the University of Oregon, our state and the nation rejecting this decision. CLLAS urges the Trump administration and Congress to continue this important program. DACA has brought hundreds of thousands of people out of the shadows, giving them the opportunity to openly be productive members of our society.

CLLAS remains firmly committed to all students at the University of Oregon, including those protected under DACA. CLLAS also stands in solidarity with the families of all DACA students.

As we urge the Trump administration and Congress to continue the DACA program, we also invite all faculty, staff, students, and community members to familiarize themselves with the various available resources concerning DACA and related issues. Please visit the CLLAS website Resources tab: http://cllas.uoregon.edu/resources/

UO Dean Stands with DACA

My statement of support for DACA students:

As an immigrant who has received immense support in the United States, I am deeply disturbed by the situation affecting students who qualify for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. What is happening to DACA students and their families holds personal significance for me, as many of my Venezuelan relatives and friends are considering coming to this country to secure a better future for their children. I have assured them—and I assure you—that this country of immigrants still offers plenty of opportunities for career development, social progress, and personal happiness. All children and young people deserve equal access to education, safety, and prosperity wherever they are, and in all circumstances. Students, I want you to know that you can count on me for understanding, support, encouragement, and advice throughout this challenging time.

Juan-Carlos Molleda, Ph.D.
Edwin L. Artzt Dean and Professor
School of Journalism and Communication
University of Oregon
217 Allen Hall
University of Oregon
Eugene, OR 97403-1275
541-346-2233 / jmolleda@uoregon.edu / @GlobalPRMolleda

UO committed to keeping promise to Dreamers

 By Ellen McWhirter, Michelle McKinley  and Kristin Yarris

Like many, we are reeling in the wake of the decision announced by the Trump administration to end the DACA program. This decision undermines the missions of our community colleges, universities and public schools, and will damage our local, state and national economies. For the past several years, the University of Oregon Dreamers Working Group has raised awareness on campus of the assets our undocumented students bring to the university, the unique challenges they face that are above and beyond the challenges of other college students, and to help staff and faculty throughout campus better understand how to respect and support our undocumented students.

We proudly echo UO President Schill’s statement of support: “In a world full of ambiguities, there is no ambiguity for me about the importance of continuing DACA. My view of morality dictates that young people, many of whom were brought here as infants or toddlers, must be allowed to remain in the United States to learn, work, and make a life for themselves. The United States is their home. To uproot them would be wrong. Period.”

 Of approximately 1.9 million undocumented young people eligible for DACA, 800,000 are protected by DACA. More than half of these young people — 560,000 — are students enrolled in community colleges and universities. Oregon is 14th out of 50 states for the number of DACA applicants, with 11,000 DACA recipients.

DACA recipients are leaders in our communities and classrooms: teachers, first responders, lawyers, engineers and technicians who are launching start-ups, providing health services and other professional expertise, and sharing their intellect and perspectives.

Their financial contributions support their families, and some are breadwinners in their own right. The economic impact of ending their work authorization is profound. In the nation, their contributions are so vital that regional and national leaders in higher education, industry and government have unanimously denounced the Trump administration’s decision; the economic consequences alone are expected to be in the billions of dollars. The psychological costs are incalculable.

The Trump administration announced this rescission at the beginning of the K-12 academic year, just as we prepare to welcome our students back to campus. A time of energy and excitement is now plunged into uncertainty.

Our students and recent graduates are devastated and demoralized. They made a bargain with the government, exposing themselves and their loved ones, to “play by the rules of law,” only to be threatened back into the shadows.

 Their desire for full contributing membership in society may now result in deportation to a country they do not know. And what about the fragmentation of their families and their dreams? We assure un­documented and DACA-protected students, graduates, and workers that we value their contributions, celebrate their accomplishments and will do everything in our power to honor our commitment to them.

Parents of undocumented students must not be criminalized for doing what so many of our grandparents and great-grandparents did for us: risking every­thing familiar and known to them for the sake of their children.

We are not at all reassured by White House statements that DACA recipients “will not be targeted” for deportation. Consistent with the statements from a rapidly growing list of professional higher education organizations, we owe it to these students and their families, as well as to other undocumented young people, to speak out against this rescission.

Most importantly, we urge Congress to act immediately to undo President Trump’s action and pass comprehensive immigration reform. Our broken immigration system pushes families apart and denies them status. We will continue working hard to make sure all students feel welcome on our campus. We encourage our community to do the same.

UO Dreamers Working Group is a collective of staff and faculty with a shared mission to foster the unique gifts and talents of Dreamer students, and promote their sense of belonging and safety as they pursue their higher education goals.

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