Georgetown Law
Georgetown Law Library

A Brief History of Civil Rights in the United States

This guide offers a history of various movements by citizens in the United States to gain political and social freedom and equality. It highlights resources available through the library and also offers a list of current civil rights organizations.

Georgetown University Response

Georgetown University has distinguished itself as an institution that has welcomed students from around the world since its inception.  Georgetown is monitoring the developments related to the Executive Order on a daily basis in order to support staff, students, and faculty navigate the impact on immigrant, nonimmigrant, and refugee entry into the United States.

Georgetown president, John J. DeGioia, has stated publicly on January 29 that Georgetown is "an institution that values the contributions of our international students, staff, and faculty, and we are deeply committed to interreligious dialogue and providing a context in which members of all faith backgrounds are welcomed and encouraged to practice their faith."

Georgetown has created both a webpage for undocumented student resources as well as a webpage for international students which are dedicated to providing links to relevant resources and information as it becomes available.  Some of these resources are included below.  

Georgetown facilitated a conversation between DREAM Act Sponsor, Senator Richard Durbin (SFS'66, L'69) and undocumented students.




The “friend of the court” brief submitted yesterday by Georgetown and 18 other universities asserts that rescinding the DACA program “deters young people from pursuing higher education,” “precludes the remarkable students enrolled at amici institutions from deriving the full benefit of their time on campus” and “forces countless future scholars, innovators and leaders to choose between withdrawing to the margins of our society and national economy or returning to countries that they have never called home.”

“On each of the occasions that I have met with our undocumented students here at Georgetown I have sought to reassure and remind them of two things – first, that each one of them belongs here – their membership in our community is not only welcomed, but vital,” DeGioia said. “And second, that they are a part of a community that is committed to ensuring they can succeed in an environment that is free from constraint or fear.”

Dreamers Making a Difference

Resources for Immigrants & Refugees

A number of groups have rallied to provide resources to help meet the needs of refugees who have been impacted negatively by the Trump administration's efforts to curb immigration.  

ProQuest has launched a "Displaced Researchers Program".  Researchers who have difficulty accessing their university's and library's resources because of travel bans or immigration changes can contact ProQuest through in order to provide displaced researchers with access to the materials they need to continue their work.

  • NB: many libraries currently provide for remote access to many electronic resources.  Users are encouraged to contact their library directly in order to troubleshoot these issues. 

ACLU has put together a guide to help immigrants understand their rights in the event that immigration (ICE) agents show up at their door. iAmerica has resources available in multiple languages ranging from paths to citizenship to knowing your rights if you're approached by police or ICE.

Catholic Charities provides Services for Immigrants and Refugees.  In addition to their Refugee Center, which helps connect refugees with basic resources ranging from job searching to language classes, Catholic Charities also has relationships with health care providers and legal services.

The Cultural Orientation Resource Center provides videos and guides in multiple languages both for refugees and their new community members.