Tufts Responds to Supreme Court Ruling

President Monaco pledges to support and protect past, present and future international students and faculty

Anthony Monaco speaks at a community forum

With the Supreme Court deciding on Monday to unblock portions of President Trump’s travel ban, Tufts President Anthony P. Monaco has reaffirmed the University’s commitment to students and faculty from around the world. “The global nature of the Tufts community is a tremendous point of pride for the University,” Monaco said, “and we continue to value all of our international community members – past, present and future.”

The travel restrictions, originally issued in January and amended in March, sought to prohibit entry to the U.S. by visitors from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen for a 90-day period. Two federal appeals courts blocked implementation of those restrictions, and the White House had asked the Supreme Court to stay those decisions until it could rule on the case. The justices agreed to consider the challenges to the president’s executive order in the fall, and restored the travel ban in part. Those who have “a credible claim of a bona fide relationship with a person or entity in the United States” would still be allowed to enter—including students who have been accepted to a U.S. university, and people who have jobs with a U.S. employer.

“Based on today’s decision, current and incoming Tufts students, faculty and staff should still be able to travel abroad and return to the United States,” read an update from the university provost’s office.  “As always, however, we must note that individual travelers may experience heightened screening requirements and delays as enforcement agencies and airlines come to grips with yet another version of the travel ban.” The provost’s office recommends that travelers carry documentation of their connection to Tufts and call the Tufts University Police Department at 617-627-3030 if they have difficulty returning from abroad. Anyone with questions is encouraged to contact their Tufts international office.

After President Trump’s initial order in January, Monaco issued a statement in support of the university’s international members, and reiterated that Tufts will not provide information or assist in the enforcement of immigration laws except as mandated by a subpoena, warrant or court order. The university also joined other colleges and universities in filing amicus briefs opposing both the original and revised executive orders.

“We are disappointed in the Supreme Court’s decision, and are hopeful for a different outcome once the justices hear full arguments this fall,” said David Harris, Tufts’ provost and senior vice president. “We continue to believe that a blanket travel ban, like the ones that have been proposed, will have a detrimental effect on higher education in the United States and impede the free exchange of ideas across countries and cultures. Tufts is committed to the protection and support of students and faculty no matter where they are from, and will continue to monitor this case, and its impact on our community, very closely.”

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