Senate Statement on Entry Restrictions

Faculty Senate Resolution on Recently Adopted Additional Restrictions on Certain Individuals’ Ability to Enter the United States of America
[Adopted by the Faculty Senate 16 February 2017]

We, the members of the Faculty Senate of the University of Massachusetts Amherst,
are outraged by recent Trump administration actions imposing additional and severe
restrictions on the ability of individual nationals of certain countries and religious
backgrounds to enter or return to the United States.

These actions sought to address fears that many Americans feel by arbitrarily projecting
them outward – onto lawful residents who happened to be abroad at the moment they
were taken and were initially denied reentry, onto individuals engaged in the process of
seeking legal entry into the country to become permanent residents by following the
already-established and often lengthy process for assessing their applications, and
even onto individuals seeking to come to the USA for shorter times as visitors or
students.

Though explained as an effort to advance the shared desire of all Americans to have
secure borders, the Trump administration actions also attacked the core values of this
country by their explicit and open discrimination among nations and religions. Those
discriminations directly contradict the American tradition of welcoming those cast out of
their native land by terror and oppression; a tradition that has allowed gathering talent
from all corners of the world, a tradition that has helped make this country great.
We at the University of Massachusetts Amherst are directly affected by these measures
because, as is true at colleges and universities across the country, faculty and students
on our campus benefit greatly from being able to study, teach, and conduct research
with students and scholars from all parts of the world. We believe it is critical that our
country continues to welcome students, scholars, scientists, and engineers of all
backgrounds and nationalities.

We affirm our commitment to support all members of the UMass Amherst community
who are affected by the recent executive actions, we applaud the campus
administration’s efforts, and we reaffirm our commitment to supporting the values of
freedom and democracy expressed in the Constitution of the United States of America.