University of Cincinnati students planning 'sanctuary campus' rally

Posted at 6:02 PM, Feb 02, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-02 18:20:12-05

CINCINNATI -- A group of University of Cincinnati students are planning to rally in favor of a "sanctuary campus" Feb. 8.

There are about 100 international students and faculty at UC who are unable to travel freely between the U.S. and their home countries because of President Donald Trump's executive order banning citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the U.S. for 90 days, according to a news release from the group Cincinnati Socialist Students.

"We just want to keep the people that are being affected by federal policies right now safe, essentially," said student organizer Cassandra Sallee. "This rally specifically is to draw attention to the fact that there is a problem and to put pressure on the university to try to correct that."

Even before Trump's order, the group had sought "sanctuary campus" designation, delivering a petition to UC officials in December seeking various protections for immigrants.

The group's announcement of the rally came the day after the City Council passed a non-binding resolution declaring Cincinnati a "sanctuary city" and after more than 70 demonstrators were arrested at a similar rally at Ohio University.

The UC students wrote that they believe "it is imperative that the University of Cincinnati becomes a sanctuary campus that will defend students and faculty from the threat of deportation and attacks on their civil rights no matter what happens at the federal, state, or municipal levels in coming months."

The rally is scheduled for 4 p.m. Feb. 8 in front of Tangeman University Center.

A university spokesperson said that school authorities were reviewing the "sanctuary campus" petition and did not have an official stance on the proposal as of Thursday.