Protect Undocumented Students at Abilene Christian University

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Dear President Phil Schubert:

We, the students of Abilene Christian University, believe that our campus should serve as a safe community for all students regardless of immigration status.

We particularly ask that you and the University publicly express its commitment to the protection of all its students, especially those who are recipients of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).

DACA has been terminated, making students once again vulnerable including risk of deportation, losing their jobs, scholarships, and driver’s licenses. An attack on their safety is an attack on the entire ACU community. The time to act to protect our students is right now.

Students at this university who have DACA, and those who are undocumented without DACA, should not have to fear losing their education and feel unsafe on our campus. Let’s show them — and all students — that we are the kind of community that has their back and they will always be welcome here.

Jesus said, in Matthew 25:34-40, that, “…the king will say to those at his right hand, ‘Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry and gave you food, or thirsty and gave you something to drink? And when was it that we saw you a stranger and welcomed you, or naked and gave you clothing? And when was it that we saw you sick or in prison and visited you?’ And the king will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.’”

We call on you to declare that Abilene Christian University will always be open to undocumented students with or without DACA.

To ensure the safety of our fellow students of all immigration statuses, we request the following steps be taken and a public statement be issued:

1. Make the university a sanctuary campus that protects the undocumented from deportation or detention, including refusing ICE (U.S. Department of Homeland Security Immigration and Customs Enforcement) and CBP (U.S. Customs and Border Protection) access to the campus and student records.

2. Continue to allow qualifying undocumented students to pay their current tuition rate.

3. Take these measures during the current semester (in other words, immediately) so that DACA students can be assured of institutional support.

Signed, the Students of Abilene Christian University