Statement by the Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities in Canada

On January 27, 2017, United States President Donald Trump signed an executive order relating to
immigration. This order bans individuals from seven countries (Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan,
Syria and Yemen) who hold valid visas and green cards from entering the United States for 90
days. The president has also banned refugees from entering the USA for the next 120 days.
The Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities in Canada shares many of the same
concerns as expressed by Universities Canada regarding the devastating implications that these
new restrictions will have on refugees, as well as for international students, staff, researchers and
faculty in Canada who are from the affected countries:

Statement in Response to US Exectuive Order

We also join with our American counterpart, the Association of Catholic Colleges and
Universities (ACCU), in objecting to this executive order:

ACCU Statement on Recent Executive Order by the President

The Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities in Canada (ACCUC) is deeply concerned
that these executive orders are contradictory to basic human rights. Furthermore, restrictions for
those from the specifically named seven countries will have a deleterious effect on many academic
communities by stranding individuals who are temporarily in Canada for scholarly pursuits, block
those needing to renew study permits that require crossing the American border, prevent family
members residing in the USA from uniting with others, and prevent many from attending research
and academic conferences, service learning, exchange programs, as well as field research and joint

The free flow of ideas and scholarly research is imperative to our society. As leaders of our
Catholic institutions of higher learning, we are very concerned that this executive order runs
counter to principles of basic human rights as well as educational and scholarly pursuits. We quote
from the 1990 Ex Corde Ecclesiae, The Apostolic Constitution of the Supreme Pontiff John Paul II
on Catholic Universities:

Every Catholic University, as a university, is an academic community which, in a rigorous
and critical fashion, assists in the protection and advancement of human dignity and of a
cultural heritage through research, teaching and various services offered to the local, national
and international communities.

And regarding the protection of all, especially the most vulnerable, we call on everyone across
Canada and the USA to recognize that we have a moral duty to assist migrants, particularly those
who are fleeing any kind of persecution. To quote Pope Francis: “It’s hypocrisy to call yourself a
Christian and chase away a refugee or someone seeking help….”

Gerry Turcotte, PhD
Chair, ACCUC
President, St. Mary’s University, Calgary

Christopher Adams, PhD
Vice-­‐Chair, ACCUC
Rector, St. Paul’s College
University of Manitoba