British Columbia

Canadian universities condemn U.S. travel ban

Both the University of British Columbia and Simon Fraser University have issued statements condemning an American travel ban that prevents residents of seven countries from entering the United States for 90 days.

UBC to establish $250K task force to help affected students, staff

UBC president Santa Ono says his university is "deeply concerned" about the effect a recent U.S. travel ban will have on the academic community. (CBC)

Universities across Canada are denouncing a recent travel ban to the United States.

Universities Canada issued a statement Sunday condemning the ban and the negative effects it will have on students, staff, visiting academics and academia generally.

"The new order is having an impact on Canadian campuses and communities that is real, immediate and profound," the statement reads.

Both the University of British Columbia and Simon Fraser University in Greater Vancouver have also issued statements, and UBC has established a task force with a $250,000 budget to determine how to help students, staff and visiting scholars affected by the ban.

McGill and the University of Toronto have issued similar statements as well. Christopher Manfredi, provost and academic vice-principal of McGill, said in a tweet that McGill "strongly supports" Universities Canada's statement.

The ban bars residents from seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the U.S. for 90 days.

UBC president and vice-chancellor Santa Ono said in a statement that he is "deeply concerned" about the executive order signed by U.S. president Donald Trump on Friday.

"UBC's academic strength and stature depends upon the freedom of our faculty, staff and students to travel abroad for purposes of scholarship and study and upon our ability to welcome the most talented individuals from around the world to our campuses," Ono said in a release.

"Actions that restrict this movement based on a person's nationality or birthplace go against our values as a university."

Simon Fraser University president and vice-chancellor Andrew Petter said in a statement that SFU has about 450 faculty, staff and visitors affected by the travel ban.

"[This ban] has generated fear and anxiety on the part of many members of our community, and has implications that are real and disturbing," Petter said in a statement.

Both Ono and Petter say affected students, staff and visitors can seek help through their respective universities' counselling and international students departments.