PSA deeply concerned by impact of US travel ban on academic community and others
30 January 2017
The Political Studies Association of the UK (PSA) deeply regrets the US President’s Executive Order denying entry to the United States without forewarning for categories of people based on their national origin. As an organisation representing academics, students and practitioners engaged in the study and conduct of politics in the United Kingdom and beyond, we are highly concerned by President Trump’s unilateral actions and what they will mean for those affected, including our academic colleagues, our students, their families, refugees left stranded by this policy, and countless others.
The President’s actions broadly and arbitrarily single out citizens, nationals, and former nationals of seven countries, including refugees once hopeful for a new life already offered to them by the United States government. As a signatory to the Geneva convention, the US has a moral and political obligation to offer protection to war refugees on humanitarian grounds.
The PSA strongly disagrees with this Executive Order, which has already disrupted the lives of academics working in the United States and students returning to university from visits to their families abroad. Professor Matthew Flinders, Chair of the PSA added: “As well as the impact on individual academics, we fear that the move could also restrict the exchange of academic information and research.”
Professor Flinders also warned: "The continued implementation of policy without proper consultation or the use of robust evidence could have catastrophic consequences for the future of academic freedom and the integrity of US democracy."