University Senate

University Senate expected to pass formal resolution collectively opposing Donald Trump’s travel ban

Frankie Prijatel | Senior Staff Photographer

Syracuse University community members signed two petitions calling on Chancellor Kent Syverud to oppose the ban. Syverud ultimately denounced the order last week.

The Syracuse University Senate is expected to pass a formal resolution on Wednesday declaring its collective opposition to United States President Donald Trump’s executive order that attempts to ban travel from seven majority Muslim countries.

Additionally, the Senate’s Committee on Appointment and Promotion will look to approve changes in the Faculty Manual that more clearly advise faculty members to appeal denials of tenure during the Senate’s meeting Wednesday afternoon in Maxwell Auditorium.

The Senate’s resolution regarding Trump’s executive order will serve as the latest in a string of statements and comments made by SU faculty and officials on the travel ban. Previously, community members signed two petitions calling on Chancellor Kent Syverud to oppose the ban, and Syverud ultimately denounced the order last week.

Trump signed the executive order banning travel from Syria, Iraq, Somalia, Iran, Sudan, Libya and Yemen for 90 days and banning refugees from entering the country for 120 days late January. Last week, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals blocked enforcement of the travel ban, upholding an earlier decision made by a federal judge in Seattle.

The Senate’s resolution states that, in addition to opposing the ban, the Senate has a “collective aspiration” to do what it can to protect the SU community from “anti-immigrant, anti-refugee and anti-Muslim actions that the federal government may take, or legislation it may enact, in the days to come.”

“We applaud the efforts by the Chancellor to assure that all members of our community are protected and able to continue their studies, and pledge to do our best to realize them. We also very much appreciate the most recent encouraging comments by the Chancellor on these issues,” the resolution states. “… It is vital that universities, including ours, serve as national and international models of inclusion, free expression and tolerance at all times, but especially at times such as this, when fundamental rights are under threat.”

A motion to update language in SU’s Faculty Manual is also on the agenda for Wednesday’s meeting. Currently, the Faculty Manual states that when denied tenure by SU, every faculty member has the right to appeal that decision “on the basis of a procedural violation.” The Appointments and Promotions Committee only considers appeals of tenure denial that are based on procedural grounds.

However, according to the committee, there is no information advising faculty on how to proceed with such an appeal. The proposed language changes to the Faculty Manual aim to inform faculty of the procedures for an appeal and the assumptions that come with filing an appeal, the motion states.

If the changes to the Faculty Manual are approved by the Senate, it will then be recommended to Syverud and Vice Chancellor and Provost Michele Wheatly as well as other “appropriate Syracuse University officers.”

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