53 F
Bellingham
Tuesday, June 2, 2020

University responds to rumors of ICE at Western

By Stella Harvey

Rumors that Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers were seen on campus circulated on Wednesday, May 2.

In a campus-wide email sent out Wednesday evening, Vice President of Enrollment and Student Services Melynda Huskey addressed these claims.  

According to Police Chief Darin Rasmussen, ICE is not currently conducting operations on Western’s campus, Huskey said in the email.

She said Western’s policy does not enforce federal immigration law, and the university does not undertake efforts with federal immigration authorities to investigate, detain or arrest students.

According to Huskey’s email, ICE, U.S. Customs and Border Protection or any other third-party officials are not allowed to remove or interrogate Western students or employees without a valid warrant signed by a judge.

In an email to The Western Front, Huskey said she learned about the rumors from a staff member, and has no information on where they originated.

Huskey said if any federal law enforcement agency is on campus, Western’s protocol states the agency must confirm their presence with University Police and the Assistant Attorney General’s Office.

Western’s policy titled Providing Immigration Information states if ICE, CBP or any other third party official seeks physical access to the Western campus without consent from the university’s director of public safety and assistant attorney general’s office, they will be asked to leave.

Rumors like these can cause fear across campus and are disruptive to Western’s community as a whole, Huskey said.

Huskey said students should contact the University Police or Public Safety Office if they see someone they believe to be an ICE officer.

Huskey said part of the reason she encourages students to contact University Police is because there are many reasons an individual agent might be on campus. She said these reasons could range from taking an exam, being a guest lecture in a class or taking part in a panel discussion.

She said University Police can provide students with information if they think they see an ICE officer on campus, and help the university to know what students are perceiving.

Students can reach University Police at (360) 650-3555 and the Public Safety Office at (360) 650-3911.

*This story was updated on May 3 at 5 p.m. It will continue to be updated.  

1 COMMENT

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

3,961FansLike
1,241FollowersFollow
5,466FollowersFollow
0SubscribersSubscribe

Must Read

Behind the systems: WWU Newman Center forced resignation of student employee after learning of same-sex partner

Student says she was told to break up with her girlfriend or quit her job

Resident advisers hold open forum with university officials to discuss concerns

Written by: Bram Briskorn and Questen Inghram Over 300 people packed into Arntzen Hall, room 100 as if it were...

Sports: Pros and cons of Seahawks’ NFL draft pick Malik McDowell

Why did the Seahawks go after a defensive tackle with their first selection in the 2017 NFL draft? Coming off...

Latest News

COVID-19 restrictions cripple Bellingham travel industry

The Bellingham Cruise Terminal on Sunday, May 17. The Alaska Ferry was form of transportation...

Bellingham Public Schools navigates remote learning challenges

Devices at Bellingham Public Schools being prepped for delivery to students to aid in remote learning. // Photo courtesy Bellingham Public...

Looking forward to live music post-COVID-19

Analog Brass performing at their first show in 2018. // Photo courtesy of Maxwell Lemke By Riley Currie

Western becomes first university in U.S. to offer palliative care minor

Western’s main campus is adding a new palliative care minor starting fall quarter. // Photo by Sophia Galvez

Whatcom County has one of the highest “unemployment rates” in Washington

Data from Washington’s Unemployment Security Department of initial unemployment claims by week since March in Whatcom County. // Graphic by Seth...

More Articles Like This