Last week, Cal State Long Beach (CSULB) President Jane Close Conoley sent along a memo to the campus community from the CSU Office of the Chancellor advising undocumented students to contact their respective university police department if their immigration status was called into question.
The educational institution released the memorandum Wednesday, a day after Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly issued two memoranda to his department providing direction regarding implementation of President Donald Trump’s recent executive orders on increased border security and stricter enforcement of immigration laws, the memo read.
While Chancellor Timothy P. White referred to the emerging federal immigration policy as complex, he said the memos do not affect the existing Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy, which remains in full effect.
White said CSU officials are examining the directives and reviewing their potential impact on CSU campuses and noted that officials do not have information indicating that stepped up enforcement will focus on CSU campuses.
“We do advise any member of our CSU community – students, faculty and staff – who is approached while on campus by federal, state or local officials asking for information or documentation regarding immigration status, to immediately contact the University Police Department,” the memo read. “The University Police Department will act as a liaison with the on-site officials, and will coordinate with the Office of General Counsel to provide guidance, references and resources as available.”
CSULB officials estimate that CSULB enrolls nearly 1,000 undocumented students.
Currently, CSU policy states that, unless otherwise required by law, it will not collaborate with law enforcement agencies to enforce federal immigration laws, according to the memo. Also, CSU university police departments will not honor immigration hold requests and university police will not contact, detain, question or arrest individuals on the basis of their suspected lack of documentation.
CSULB has already faced a similar issue, one that led officials to call for a general order last May when university police detained an undocumented Long Beach man, which led to his deportation.
White said that Kelly’s memos do not affect CSU’s policies or practices and its university police departments.
“As I have emphasized in the past, the California State University is committed to being an inclusive and welcoming institution of higher education that is enhanced by our global community,” White said. “As such, we will continue to make every lawful effort to provide a safe and welcoming campus environment for all of our students, faculty, staff, alumni and members of our community.”
Among Kelly’s directives is the hiring of thousands of more Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers and agents and prioritize deporting convicted criminals, those who have abused welfare programs, the expansion of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) Program which allows qualified state or local law enforcement officers to be designated as "immigration officers," and the immediate planning and construction of a wall between the U.S. and Mexico.
For more information on Kelly’s directives, click here.