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Make Your School District a Safer One For Immigrants

Join other Utahns who are taking grassroots action to make their schools safer for immigrant students and families!Screen Shot 2017 03 30 at 3.30.31 PM

Many folks throughout the state are wondering how they can proactively support immigrants and refugees in our communities, in light of recent Executive Orders and heated rhetoric that target these groups for negative federal attention.

As part of the new PeoplePower movement, many Utahns have met with their local law enforcement leaders to discuss ways to keep their cities safe for vulnerable immigrants and refugees. And now, compassionate community members are looking to their schools as another place where support can be offered to neighbors and friends who are undocumented.

You can act to make your local schools a safer, more supportive place for immigrant students and families.

Community members living in both the Salt Lake City School District and in the Ogden City School District have taken action in recent weeks by asking their respective School Boards to adopt resolutions in support of immigrant students and families within the districts.

In Ogden, ACLU of Utah Board Members Barry Gomberg and Forrest Crawford joined other community leaders to ask the Ogden City School District to make a strong public statement condemning harassment and bullying of immigrant students, which immigrant advocates say have increased since the election of President Donald Trump in November. The ACLU of Utah stood with Americans Coming Together for Immigrants in Ogden and Nationwide (ACTION) and Latinos United Promoting Education and Civic Engagement in asking the school board to adopt the resolution, which also calls for the district to create a rapid response team that can help students "deprived of adult care, supervision or guardianship outside of school due to a federal immigration action."

In proposing the resolution (which has yet to be officially adopted by the Ogden City School District), the Ogden community members were following the lead of activists and advocates (supported by another ACLU of Utah board member, Heidi Chamorro!) in Salt Lake City. 

Unidade Inmigrante - an inclusive, social-justice oriented, community group that focuses on advocating and addressing systemic issues affecting intersectional identities, within the immigrant community in Salt Lake - brought a proposal to the Salt Lake City School Board back in February. The resolution received strong community support, and the group was able to discuss its motivations with such community partners as KRCL 90.9 RadioActive. Unidade Inmigrante's proposal was revised and adopted by the Salt Lake School District a month later, and has inspired Racially Just Utah and others to offer assistance drafting similar - and even stronger - proposals for other community members to take to their school districts.

If you are interested in bringing a "Safe Schools" resolution to your School District, help is available!

We encourage you to contact our colleague This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., for assistance. We have worked with Ms. Abarca to develop this DRAFT MODEL RESOLUTION that you can use as a starting point. (If you would like this Model Resolution in a word document that you can edit, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..)

We can work together to make all Utah schools SAFE SCHOOLS for children, regardless of their race, religion, country of origin, or citizenship status.