I have agreed to sign onto the Amicus Brief in support of nation nationally-recognized immigrant rights leader Ravi Ragbir’s lawsuit against the Department of Homeland Security, challenging the unlawful targeting of immigrant rights activists nationwide in violation of the First Amendment.
In the lawsuit Ragbir et al. v. Homan et al., nationally recognized immigrant rights leader Ravi Ragbir, along with the New Sanctuary Coalition, CASA de Maryland, Detention Watch Network, National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild, and the New York Immigration Coalition, are challenging the unlawful targeting of immigrant rights activists nationwide in violation of the First Amendment. Represented by attorneys at Arnold & Porter and the NYU Immigrant Rights Clinic, Plaintiffs have filed a motion for a preliminary injunction, which seeks an order (1) staying Mr. Ragbir’s removal pending adjudication of the case, and (2) restraining federal immigration officials from taking any adverse immigration enforcement action against any noncitizen on the basis of protected speech or expressive conduct, or, in the alternative, preliminarily enjoining federal immigration officials from opening an investigation into, surveilling, accelerating proceedings against, detaining, or altering the provisions of any order against any noncitizen on the basis of protected speech or expressive conduct.
The law firm of Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler, LLP, is drafting an amicus brief on behalf of faith leaders in support of the plaintiffs. The brief is tentatively due March 1, 2018. The brief will describe the sanctuary movement and argue that the targeting of immigrants, faith leaders, and places of worship affiliated with the sanctuary movement – through retaliation and surveillance – raises serious First Amendment concerns.
Amicus briefs from faith leaders are often filed in major litigation across the country, including in Gloucester County School Board v. GG to oppose discrimination against transgender individuals, and in Masterpiece Cakeshop, Ltd. v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission to oppose discrimination against same-sex couples.