President Andrew Hamilton sent an email to the NYU community on March 15 — one day after a federal judge in Hawaii froze President Donald Trump’s newly revised travel ban — updating students on the university’s efforts to counter the executive order.
Trump’s original executive order, which banned entry into the United States from seven Muslim-majority countries, was met with protests and opposition. The revised order would suspend the admission of refugees from these countries and temporarily ban the issuance of new visas to six Muslim-majority countries.
In the email, Hamilton said that NYU submitted an amicus curiae brief to supplement two lawsuits against the proposed executive order, including the case that resulted in the halting of the order.
“With this amicus brief, we at NYU once again add our voices to those calling for the executive order to be overturned by the courts,” Hamilton said in the email. “In so doing we reaffirm our values; declare our support for our friends, colleagues, and peers from the six countries cited; and remind those who wish to come to NYU from all over the world that they are welcome and valued here.”
In a statement to Washington Square News, President Hamilton said that from the time the first executive order was issued, he has made NYU’s stance against the first executive order concerning travel very clear.
“We’re opposed to policies that limit the movement of scholars and students coming to NYU to pursue their academic work and that harm or frighten those who already have,” Hamilton said. “When the latest version of the executive order was issued, I felt it was important to express our community’s values clearly and forcefully.”
Hamilton said that filing an amicus brief has enabled the university to help in supporting the two legal suits against the order.
However, The Sanctuary Campus Working Group is not satisfied with Hamilton’s words. The group fighting for NYU to declare sanctuary and promise protection for immigrant students and finds the action contradictory.
“To simultaneously express concern about retaliation from the federal government upon the use of the term sanctuary and file a formal brief against the federal government is bizarre at best,” the Sanctuary Student Working Group said.
But other student groups, such as the Muslim Student Association, have voiced support for the affirmations outlined in Hamilton’s email. CAS senior and Vice President of the Muslim Student Association Sana Mayat said that the club is happy to see Hamilton and the greater NYU community joining the voices against the executive order.
“We do hope that NYU will be at the forefront of taking concrete steps to assist students directly affected,” Mayat said. “Through actions, such as but not limited to declaring NYU a sanctuary campus.”
A version of this article appeared in the Monday, March 20 print edition. Email Natasha Roy and Jemima McEvoy at [email protected]