In ongoing support for Dreamers, University of Oklahoma President David Boren has added his name to a letter from more than 550 college and university presidents calling on US leaders to uphold and expand the DACA program.
“I think we should take a compassionate stance toward those individuals who were brought here while they were still children and have already been making a positive contribution to our country at their schools and elsewhere,” Boren said in the statement. He added that he also has continuously supported the DREAM Act.
The statement Boren signed says signees, “as educational leaders,” are “committed to upholding free inquiry and education in our colleges and universities, and to providing the opportunity for all our students to pursue their learning and life goals.” It also says signees are in favor of DACA expansion.
“To our country’s leaders we say that DACA should be upheld, continued, and expanded,” states the letter from the college and university presidents, which has been signed by 583 educators to date.
“We are prepared to meet with you to present our case. This is both a moral imperative and a national necessity. America needs talent – and these students, who have been raised and educated in the United States, are already part of our national community. They represent what is best about America, and as scholars and leaders they are essential to the future.”
In Nevada, the Rogers Foundation has called “for all K-12 and post-secondary education campuses in Southern Nevada to unequivocally and publicly declare that their campuses will be sanctuaries for undocumented students, staff, and their family members who face imminent deportation”:
“Our students and their parents are also concerned that the president-elect’s promised changes to our civil rights laws will adversely impact them,” said Beverly Rogers, Chairman of the Board of The Rogers Foundation. “President-elect Trump’s promised changes to Title IX will eliminate protections that ensure all students, without regard to race, gender, religion or sexual orientation, can learn in a safe and nondiscriminatory environment. In short, the president-elect has promised policies that will devastate our students’ lives and divide our community.”
The letter states, “In light of circumstances, The Rogers Foundation’s mission to transform lives through education is now more critical than ever. Our programs support some of Southern Nevada’s most vulnerable students, and we believe their rights and future are in danger. It is for this reason we seek to establish sanctuary within all of our educational institutions.”
The letter outlines several specific safeguards requested and urges that concrete measures be taken to ensure that all students in Southern Nevada are provided the basic American right not to live in fear.
“Our K-12 and post-secondary education campuses must not only be physical safe spaces, but intellectual asylums where freedom to think, to speak, and to hold diverse views is championed,” the letter continues. “They should be zones where human rights are upheld, where privacy is respected, where bullying or ostracism cannot take place.”