Featured News - Current News - Archived News - News Categories

The College at Brockport vows to protect immigrant students

by Siomara Germain - COPY EDITOR
Tue, Mar 7th 2017 05:00 pm
Photo courtesy of brockport.edu and suny.edu
Photo courtesy of brockport.edu and suny.edu
No Prior Images
Viewing 1 of 2
View Next Image

 Immigration raids are taking place all over the country. President Donald Trump has issued an executive order for Immigration and Customs Enforcements agents and police officers to detain any immigrant they may cross paths with. Many immigrants are strongly encouraged to walk around with some form of documentation of their citizenship.

With similar concerns spreading all over the country, undocumented students on college campuses have especially voiced their concerns about the future of the federal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA). 

The program provides undocumented students who receive DACA status a safe haven from deportation. They're called DREAMers. 

According to the memorandum, affirming support for undocumented students, which State University of New York Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher sent to the members of the Board of Trustees, "many individuals with DACA status are college students. 

Because DACA does not have the force of law - being that it is essentially federal agency guidance - it can be rescinded at any time. As a result, there have been calls across the nation and on SUNY campuses, for colleges and universities to declare their campuses to be 'sanctuary' campuses."

The College at Brockport is one of the many colleges around the country are taking steps to protect undocumented students. Brockport has adopted the Immigration Enforcement Policy to do so. 

According to Brockport Chief Communications Officer David Mihalyov, "all other state-operated campuses are responding to the same BOT resolution."

The policy that details SUNY State-operated College University Police Department rules for responding to requests from federal immigration officials. 

In the past, it has been commonplace for SUNY University Police departments to not take part in the enforcement of federal immigration law. 

The only time this would be done would be if the college were to be compelled by a court order or other legal mandate. 

"This came about because the SUNY Board of Trustees has directed each campus to have a policy and provided a model that had been approved by SUNY Counsel and the state Attorney General's office," Mihalyov wrote in an email.

If ICE agents were to show up on campus with a request for assistance, Mihalyov said the State University Police would comply with the established policy in responding to that request. 

As the purpose of the policy is to provide rules for University Police, it is only applicable to the jurisdiction of University Police. 

This means that the policy only protects undocumented students who are in Brockport. 

If undocumented students are out of the Brockport University Police region, they cannot be protected.

"The Board of Trustees has required this of all state-operated campuses, not simply The College at Brockport," Mihalyov wrote.

The campus is putting out for review the exact policy that SUNY provided. 

The campus currently has less than 30 days to review and respond to the  proposed policy.

@siomaraag

sgerm2@u.brockport.edu

Photo of the Week