As president Donald Trump takes over the affairs of America from November 2016, there has been a growing concern amongst the undocumented immigrants of America who are facing the threats of mass deportation due to Trump’s anti-immigrant policies. This has led to the call for ‘sanctuary’ campus of colleges and schools.
The utmost need of ‘sanctuary’ campuses for colleges and high-schools
A ‘sanctuary’ campus is a special kind of campus for a college or even for a high school in the United States of America, which provides optimum protection to the undocumented students and professors of the campuses. There are almost 7,52,000 undocumented immigrants spread throughout the length and breadth of America amongst which, roughly around 65,000 are studying in schools, colleges and universities and some are even teaching or working there.
In such cases, a ‘sanctuary’ campus is of immense help because they are always under the risk of getting deported back to their countries and the ‘sanctuary’ status shields these people from any such possibilities. Therefore, as President Donald Trump’s inhibiting immigration policies designed solely against the undocumented immigrants came into picture, gradually, mass movements started in order to make the university and college campuses as ‘sanctuaries’.
Once Undocumented now Settled Immigrants also chip in for help
In fact, a petition was also started by Jason Ruiz, associate professor of Notre Dame University in a move towards making the nation’s most eminent Catholic school as ‘sanctuary’ that was welcomed by the mass and almost 4500 signatures were collected from the Notre Dame community within one day of launching of the petition. Ruiz himself is a grandson of an undocumented immigrant and hence, he very well understands the plight associated with the daily fears that any such person has to live with while staying in America.
Present position of Undocumented Immigrants in America
President Trump has already banned the entry of refugees and people from almost seven Muslim-majority countries and more of the inhibitory immigration policies are awaited from the President’s desk. In fact, Trump is also planning to nab any kind of immigrant-friendly policies that started from President Obama’s time and are presently prevailing in America.
DACA or Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program is one of them. This program is totally aimed at undocumented immigrants who entered into America during their childhood within sixteen years of age only and therefore, have no proper national documented identity.
DACA by Obama comes in handy now for some immigrants
However, under DACA, any such undocumented individual can take a renewable two-year period work or study permit and continue to stay and work in America without the fear of getting deported back to their country of origin. This is very much useful in the context that for these immigrants, America has become the home and they hardly have any connection with their native country.
They are completely settled, studying or working in America and any sudden change in the immigration policies can grossly affect their livelihood as they have to leave their work, education and family in some cases or in other words, the whole existence will be shattered. Nevertheless, if the universities and schools are given the ‘sanctuary’ stature just like the Swarthmore College, Wesleyan University, etc. such DACA immigrants will be safe and secure from the threats of mass deportation.
America Fights Back to oppose Law with no Basis
Hence, the need of the hour for the Americans who proudly boasted of their immigration tradition, is the necessity for conversion of colleges and universities into ‘sanctuaries’ at the earliest although the American Government is opposing the same stating it ‘has no basis under law’ to which experts have fought back stating that even ‘anti-immigration policies have no basis under law’. The Americans however, will continue to fight for the rights of the undocumented immigrants.