Democratic lawmakers, including Assistant Minority Leader Kristin Boggs (D-Columbus), Assistant Minority Whip Rep. Richard Brown (D-Canal Winchester), Reps. Erica C. Crawley (D-Columbus), David Leland (D-Columbus), Mary Lightbody (D-Westerville), Beth Liston (D-Dublin), and Allison Russo (D-Upper Arlington), today urged support for international students attending Columbus-area colleges and universities. The move follows the Trump administration’s announcement last week that it would ban international students attending U.S. colleges in the fall if they take only online courses.
“International students represent the diversity and economic opportunities that make our community strong,” said Rep. Leland. “They should not be pawns in Trump’s deadly game to pretend that the pandemic doesn’t exist.”
In letters to The Ohio State University, Otterbein University, Ohio Dominican University and Capital University, the Democratic lawmakers urged university officials to “exercise every available option to accommodate our international students during these extraordinary times.”
Democrats decried the administration’s move, saying it “amounts to using international students as pawns in the Trump administration’s game to force colleges and universities to open in person, regardless of the nature of the viral outbreaks in their regions. It is cruel, reckless, and should be condemned as an affront to our values of diversity and inclusion.”