Dear Members of the Santa Clara University Community,
As a Jesuit, Catholic institution, Santa Clara University has a longstanding history of being in solidarity with immigrant and undocumented communities, and speaking against anti-immigration policies* that have targeted families and communities*.
On Friday, July 16, federal district court Judge Andrew Hanen issued a ruling that the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program was “unlawful.” SCU fully supports the aims of DACA, which protects from deportation more than 600,000 people brought to the U.S. as children and offers a legal route for work, education, and other forms of civic participation. This ruling effectively halts consideration of new applications for DACA status, and throws into question the protections afforded to current DACA recipients—including some on our campus.
Although the ruling did not rescind DACA outright for current recipients, there remain several concerns and unanswered questions about its meaning and scope, along with its impact on our communities. We do know, however, that this ruling is already affecting our SCU community, especially our students.
SCU has long supported undocumented students* and students from mixed-status families, and we will continue to do so. Our very own Mission Church* has served as a physical site of sanctuary and safety. It is this history and values grounded in our shared humanity that characterizes our continued commitment to the well-being of our undocumented community. Now, as always, we will continue to offer support and solidarity.
To provide our campus community with information and resources on how to best support our undocumented communities and those impacted by the outcomes of this ruling, the Community Conversation scheduled for Tuesday, August 3 at 12:10 p.m. via Zoom will focus on the latest updates associated with the DACA ruling. At our Community Conversation, we will provide opportunities for the community to engage directly with this issue, learn more, and consider opportunities for advocacy and solidarity in action. Additional details about the Community Conversation will be shared by the Office for Diversity and Inclusion.
In addition, prior to the start of the academic year for faculty and staff, the Undocumented Student Working Group (USWG) will host additional workshops for the UndocuAlly campus organization, which works to support undocumented members of our community. Resources will also be provided for those interested in increased advocacy and action efforts, as well as ways to support students. You can learn more about Santa Clara University’s support here.
Amidst the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and contentious political climate, this is an unwarranted burden on our undocumented community and mixed-status families. As a Jesuit, Catholic institution committed to social justice, as well as educating and caring for the whole person—cura personalis—we will provide continued support to those impacted by this ruling and advocate for the needs of our SCU community members.
If you have a question or concern about the ruling and its impact on the community, please contact Erin Kimura-Walsh, Director of the LEAD Scholars Program, or Ray Plaza, Director of the Office for Diversity and Inclusion.
Lisa A. Kloppenberg
Shá Duncan Smith
Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
* links to these sources were curated by students in ETHN 187 for the podcast “Uplifting Dreamers & Undocumented Student Voices at SCU”