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A letter from President Napolitano on the administration’s decision to end DACA

To the University of California Community:

I am deeply troubled by President Trump’s decision today to effectively end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. This backward-thinking decision is nothing less than a ­­broken promise to high-achieving young people who study in our schools, serve in our military and rightfully call America home.

As I have before, I am continuing to call upon the leaders of the U.S. Congress to immediately pass bipartisan legislation that would provide a permanent solution for these young people – one that charts a secure pathway toward citizenship and allows these Dreamers to continue to live, work, and serve the only country most of them know as home. These youth need our protection and encouragement, and it is incumbent upon Congress to approve legislation that removes the uncertainty caused by President Trump’s misguided decision.

Since I worked to establish the DACA program in 2012, more than three-quarters of a million young immigrants have pursued a college education and launched meaningful careers, thousands of them right here on our UC campuses. These impressive students, most of whom were brought to the U.S. as infants and very young children, have worked hard to get to UC and they enrich our university community, and our society. Most are the first in their families to attend college, and they work hard to further their educations. Some are pursuing PhDs and have other ambitious, humanitarian goals.

They represent the very best of our country and embody the spirit of the American dream.

Given today’s decision, I am reaffirming UC’s vigorous support for all our undocumented students and staff, and our commitment to ensuring that UC continues to be a welcoming and supportive place for students, faculty, and staff from all backgrounds.

Despite President Trump’s decision, UC will continue to provide a broad range of support services for undocumented students,including the following:

  • Academic, career and personal counseling
  • Financial aid
  • Mental health support
  • Housing assistance
  • Research support

Undocumented UC students also have access to an array of free legal services through the UC Immigrant Legal Services Center, including:

  • Legal advice and representation for undocumented UC students and their families, as well as students who are U.S. citizens with undocumented family members;
  • Legal support for informational and know-your-rights sessions at UC campuses;
  • Assistance in filing humanitarian and educational travel applications;
  • Consultations and direct representation in immigration court or before immigration agencies.

Additionally, we remain steadfast in upholding our Principles in Support of Undocumented Members of the UC Community. These principles, which I issued last fall, protect the privacy and civil rights of undocumented students, as it does all members of its community. Among other things, the principles state the following:

Campus police officers will not contact, detain, question or arrest an individual solely on the basis of suspected undocumented immigration status or to discover the immigration status of an individual, except as required by law. …

We will not release immigration status or related information in confidential student records, without permission from a student, to federal agencies or other parties without a judicial warrant, a subpoena, a court order or as otherwise required by law.

In light of today’s decision, I am immediately directing my advisory committee on undocumented students to determine what additional measures are necessary to best support and protect current and future UC students who rely on DACA over the next six months and beyond.  We will keep you updated on the outcomes of the advisory committee’s work.

Further, I will continue to advocate for Congress to take the necessary and urgent action to protect Dreamers. You can join me in this effort by signing up for the UC Advocacy Network.

Our diversity is one of our greatest strengths. I invite every member of the UC community to join me in celebrating — and protecting — it.

Yours very truly,

Janet Napolitano

Comment ( 1 )

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  1. Amy Vrizuela September 5, 2017 Reply

    Thank you for continuing to stand firm on this.

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