by Kelly Rogge, KCKCC
Kansas City Kansas Community College is standing behind its faculty, staff and students – no matter their immigration status.
“The immigration orders and other actions of the current administration in Washington, D.C., have made many of our students and employees worried and confused about their futures and the futures of their families,” KCKCC President Doris Givens said. “We at Kansas City Kansas Community College are very proud of our diverse population – students, staff and faculty All are crucial to the strength and success of our college.”
The KCKCC Board of Trustees approved a resolution April 21 on how immigration issues will be handled on the campus in the future. The resolution is in response to the growing concern among students and faculty in the United States that immigration enforcement actions could affect their education rights.
The following guidelines will be followed absent any applicable federal, state or local law, regulations or ordinance:
• All requests made of the college by Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials to access school property shall be processed through the designated college contact person who will consult with legal counsel to ensure compliance with the law.
• KCKCC Campus Police will not act on behalf of federal agents to enforce federal immigration laws or share anyone’s immigration status unless there is a warrant.
• College faculty or staff will continue to strictly adhere to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act guidelines and protect confidential information, which includes immigration status.
• The college will designate a contact person who will respond swiftly to all inquiries from faculty or staff regarding ICE requests or encounters.
• The college will not tolerate any discrimination against students or others based on immigration status.
“We want to state clearly that we support our students, faculty and staff, regardless of national heritage or immigration status,” Givens said. “We value the contributions to our community from the many people from other parts of the world who study and work here. We will safeguard the dignity and humanity of all individuals on campus.”
Givens said she has also joined with more than 600 other college and university leaders in signing a letter, which calls for the continuation of the Deferred Action for Children Arrivals program. DACA allows certain undocumented immigrants who entered the United States as children to receive a renewable two-year deferred action from deportation. The policy allows these individuals to go to school and be eligible for a work permit. To read the full statement visit https://www.pomona.edu/news/2016/11/21-college-university-presidents-call-us-uphold-and-continue-daca.
“This is a moment in our history that is making many people feel afraid and uncertain,” Givens said. “I hope that all students, faculty and staff feel welcome and safe in our college environment. We must all try to reaffirm our commitment to ensuring that KCKCC campuses are free from discrimination and bigotry, so that we can work, teach and learn in tolerant and supportive spaces.”