On January 31, the UBC Alma Mater Society (AMS) and Graduate Student Society (GSS) issued a statement regarding the recent events targeting the Muslim community. The statement written by Ava Nasiri and Genevieve Cruz, presidents of the AMS and GSS respectively, condemns President Trump’s executive order that restricts travel from seven nations to the United States and expresses its condolences for the recent shooting in Quebec City.
The executive order targets seven predominately Muslim countries — Iraq, Iran, Syria, Somalia, Sudan, Libya and Yemen. The order bans any entry of citizens of these countries into the United States for 90 days and bans refugees from other countries for 120 days. Refugees from Syria are banned indefinitely.
“The AMS and GSS remain committed to building a diverse community within and outside the university, where students feel safe and have room for self expression and participation without fear,” the statement reads. “We are currently working with the UBC administration to assess the impact of these recent events on UBC students.”
Besides an expression of solidarity, the AMS and GSS highlight the different resources available to students at this time in light of recent events. Available services include international student advising, counselling services, AMS Speakeasy, and the Equity and Inclusion office.
The AMS and GSS statements follow President Santa Ono’s statement, in which he announced the creation of a task force with the goal of determining what degree of assistance that the university can offer to those affected by the ban.
UBC students protested the ban at the Trump Tower in downtown Vancouver on Saturday evening. The UBC Social Justice Centre is organizing a similar protest on February 5 at the United States consulate. UBC students have also organized a candlelit vigil to demonstrate solidarity with the Muslim community of Quebec, which will take place tonight in the Nest at 4 p.m.