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Response to Deportation and Detention Actions

February 11, 2017

Dear Students, Staff and Faculty:

Yesterday’s wave of deportation raids and detentions, in states including California, North Carolina, South Carolina, New York, Illinois, Georgia and Texas, has added to a climate of fear and uncertainty in our country.

This morning, Dean of Students Julianne Ohotnicky reached out to any student who has identified herself as undocumented, to check on her and offer the college’s full support. I am in touch with students involved in Organizing for Undocumented Students Rights (OUSR), as well as faculty concerned about these issues, to seek their advice about how best to support our community. Professor Ginetta Candelario has shared some resources about students and scholars’ rights and protections which we will add to our comprehensive immigration policy website.

I write to reaffirm Smith College’s policies to protecting all members of our community, which I described in letters on November 28, 2016, January 29, 2017, and February 7, 2017.

It is also important to note that the City of Northampton has committed to not complying with voluntary requests from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). The college continues to partner with the city and the Northampton Police Department in the protection of our students, staff, faculty and neighbors.

I am heartened by the work of so many in this community who are actively caring for those potentially at risk, or whose families may be at risk, and supporting their right to pursue their education, at Smith and beyond.


Kathleen McCartney