Willamette University is an inclusive community for all

by University Communications,

Statement from President Steve Thorsett, Senior Vice President Carol Long, the Deans of the College of Liberal Arts (Ruth Feingold), College of Law (Curtis Bridgeman) and the Atkinson Graduate School of Management (Debra Ringold), and the Vice President for Campus Life (Ed Whipple).

The contentious election season and last week’s results have brought significant anxiety and frustration to many in our community, especially those who may be vulnerable to changing laws and regulations regarding immigration status as well as those covered under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).

In light of this uncertainty, we need to be deeply mindful of the safety and privacy of our students. Willamette University is a community committed to diversity, equity and inclusion, which seeks to make all feel safe and welcome.

The Chaplain’s Office, President’s Office and Office of Campus Life can help concerned students make connections to appropriate resources. In addition, Willamette’s Human Rights and Immigration Law Clinic is organizing a list of resources and hopes to provide students and families with information sessions and referrals to attorneys with expertise in particular cases. In addition, and in accord with current practice:

  • Willamette University will not facilitate immigration enforcement on our campus without a warrant or demonstration of risk to the health or safety of others;
  • Willamette University will not share any information with the federal government regarding immigration status of students unless required by court order;
  • Willamette University will not compel its employees to act on behalf of federal officials in enforcing immigration laws.

We have seen tremendous kindness and generosity among members of our community over the past week. Let us continue to take care of each other and make Willamette the kind of community that shows others that diversity, equity and inclusion for all are at the foundation of a just and sustainable world.