The President Trump administration rescinded a recent policy that would have deported hundreds of thousands of international students had their classes remained online during the COVID-19 pandemic.
On July 6, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced that international students would need to return to their home countries if classes remain virtual this fall. The policy also only gave colleges and universities until Wednesday to inform the federal government of their plans for remote courses and require that each international student is certified for in-person classes by Aug. 4 in order to maintain their visa status.
“This policy would have left thousands of international students no choice but to leave the United States, and my colleagues and I couldn’t stand by while this administration took another action to perpetuate a divisive message, while endangering lives and robbing our educational institutions of crucial financial resources,” Attorney General Dana Nessel said.
Nessel, along with 17 other attorneys general, filed a lawsuit on Monday in the U.S. District Court in Massachusetts against the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and ICE seeking an injunction to stop the rule.
“The recklessness of this administration may have been reined in, and we have avoided what would have been an extremely unfortunate situation for thousands of international students, but I will be ready to hold this administration accountable for any future missteps,” she said.