A group of undocumented students at Columbia University in New York City presented a list of demands to their Ivy League school.
The group called Undocumented Students Initiative or “UndoCU,” released 13 demands that included items such as protection from federal authorities that might be wanting to deport them.
Along with other demands they also requested subsidized summer housing, a complete reimbursement of health care fees, special fundraising, consoling and a series of sensitivity training for all faculty at Columbia.
The group demanded clarification of the university’s policies towards undocumented students, should they have their Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals or DACA status revoked.
They took their cause to social media and posted on Facebook, We refuse to amend or change any of these demands, [W]e expect the university to act.”
“How will the university help us cope with our legal working rights being taken away? How will the university help with our inability to pay tuition or housing?” the group wrote. “In all possible senses, how will the university provide the proper support that will allow us to thrive as students and contributing members of our university community?”
“We also demand full reimbursement of the health insurance fees,” adding that the school “refunded portions of these fees, but the calculations are inaccurate and leaves graduating students with exorbitant amounts of account balances which potentially hinders their request for academic transcripts and degrees.”
“How can administration contact and keep in touch with undocumented students without a record of students that the administration may be in the future be forced to relinquish to federal authorities?” they wrote.
“We want the university as a whole and individual schools to raise funding to specifically support undocumented students in both undergrad and grad schools with the objective of creating undocumented student specific scholarships and grants,” the group wrote. “Need based funding must be available for undocumented students at all Columbia University and affiliate schools.”
“Much like sexual health training, it is imperative that immigration subjects be treated with the proper language and information,” the group explained. “It is unacceptable for students to be called ‘illegal’ in their own classrooms or for professors to tell us to ‘get legal.’”
The group was created last year, around the time when Trump won the presidential elections.
Although, the list of demands coming from the group is not at all surprising, as such demands have been coming forward by predominantly liberal and progressive students all across the country.