Broward County Schools Adopt Measures To Protect Students From Immigration Raids

Mar 7, 2017

‪The School Board of Broward County became the first district in South Florida to pass a resolution that makes school grounds and education-related activities, such as sports tournaments or even prom,  safe zones for immigrant students and their families.

A community resolution, drawn up with input from organizations like the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and the Florida Immigrant Coalition, passed unanimously Tuesday. 

Under the resolution, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents will not be able to collect information about immigration status in Broward County schools, nor perform raids, without an arrest warrant or an order from a judge.

Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and the Florida Immigrant Coalition members gather together to take a picture. Members helped draft the proposed resolution that was passed Tuesday by School Board of Broward County.
Credit Amanda Rabines / WLRN News

Palm Beach County also practices similar policies, but Broward County became the first district in South Florida to cement those policies in a resolution.

The language in the resolution protects student immigrants from ICE raids on school district property or while participating in educational related activities, such as field trips, bus stops and school events like prom.

"People are sometimes afraid to stand up or to make a statement, what we've done is pave the way for everyone else to do that," said Robin Bartleman, Broward County Board Member who first presented the resolution to the school board attorney Monday.

"Students need to feel safe in our schools. Public education is the foundation of our democracy and we welcome every child regardless of their immigration status," said Bartleman.