Chicago Public Schools (CPS) have taken a stand against President Donald Trump’s war on immigration by informing principals at their various school districts not to allow United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials inside district buildings without a criminal warrant.
In addition, it is reported that principals under CPS’ authority were told to have parents update their student’s emergency contact forms and include backup contacts that the schools could contact in the event that the child’s parents were detained by immigration authorities.
This is an amazing show of solidarity and it is truly bold on CPS’ part to stand up to Trump’s very blatant targeting of Mexican-American citizens and those trying to fight for citizenship.
While Trump has stated that he intends to deport denizens that are here illegally, it is very obvious that his war on immigration intends to disrupt families and those who have migrated to the United States legally as well.
What CPS has done is brilliant because it is using The Department of Homeland Security’s task against them. DHS has announced a broad expansion of ICE priorities stating that the focus is on immigrants who have been convicted of criminal offenses or have unresolved criminal charges currently pending.
Therefore, no one from Immigration and Customs Enforcement should be allowed onto school property without the proper criminal warrant. CPS Chief Education Officer Janice Jackson sent a letter to the principals to that effect stating:
“To be very clear, CPS does not provide assistance to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement in the enforcement of federal civil immigration law.”
While there have not been known incidents in which immigration officials have tried to access schools, CPS would rather err on the side of caution and prepare both the district principals and their students’ families. The letter continued, saying:
“ICE agents should wait outside while the school is reviewing the matter with the Law Department.”
In the event that a child is stranded and parents are detained, the letter had this to say:
“If a child is left stranded at your school and you suspect it is because his or her parent is detained, please exhaust the child’s emergency contact list. Please have a staff member remain with the student until the parent, guardian or emergency contact can arrive.”
Jackson’s letter ended with a message of solidarity and standing behind their student body and their families during these uncertain times.
“While many of our families have serious concerns and anxiety about recent federal actions and statements, we want to make sure that parents know school is a safe place for all students regardless of their race, ethnicity or country of origin.”
CPS is amazing for doing this. All schools should prepare their faculty and students for what could come of Trump’s war on immigration.
Featured image courtesy of Chicago Sun Times