University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name National Association for the Advancement of Colored People v. Trump IM-DC-0032
Docket / Court 1:17-cv-01907-CRC ( D.D.C. )
State/Territory District of Columbia
Case Type(s) Immigration and/or the Border
Special Collection Civil Rights Challenges to Trump Immigration Enforcement Orders
Case Summary
On Sept. 18, 2017, the NAACP filed this lawsuit against the federal government in response to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) memorandum issued on Sept. 5, 2017 ending Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). Plaintiff, represented by the law firm Cohen Milstein, filed the complaint ... read more >
On Sept. 18, 2017, the NAACP filed this lawsuit against the federal government in response to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) memorandum issued on Sept. 5, 2017 ending Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). Plaintiff, represented by the law firm Cohen Milstein, filed the complaint in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

In the complaint, plaintiff stated that the Trump administration, by ending DACA, had "unlawfully alleged on [its] promise to protect young, undocumented immigrants of color living in the United States." Plaintiff noted that 95% of DACA recipients were people of color, including people of African, Latin American, Asian, and Middle Eastern descent. Some DACA recipients were also NAACP members. Thus plaintiff brought the suit in its organizational capacity on behalf of its DACA-recipient members.

The complaint asserted that DACA allowed children brought to the United States who met specific criteria to request deferred action for two years, subject to renewal. In addition to protecting grantees from being arrested solely due to their immigration status, DACA allowed its grantees to receive public benefits like social security, to enroll in higher education institutions, and to increase income and assets. All throughout the implementation process, the federal government enforcing DACA clearly represented that it would not use the information obtained in the application process to enforce immigration policy. Furthermore, the government promised that recipients would only lose their lawful presence for reasons of fraud, criminal conduct, national security, or public safety.

Plaintiff argued that these recipients would now lose their protections and be at risk for deportation, especially since the grantees provided the federal government with sensitive information in their applications, and "termination of the DACA Program is accompanied by withdrawal of the guarantee that information provided by DACA applicants and registrants will not be used in deportation proceedings."

Plaintiff alleged that defendants had violated Fifth Amendment Due Process rights, by withdrawing DACA status, and would do so again by using sensitive information in deportation proceedings. Plaintiff also alleged that defendants violated the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), by carrying out government action without a "legitimate and reasoned basis." Specifically, the automatic DACA termination, with no notice or opportunity to respond, ran contrary to USCIS's DACA Standard Operating Procedures (SOP). Finally, plaintiff alleged that defendants violated the Regulatory Flexibility Act, by carrying out regulatory action that would harm small organizations such as plaintiff.

Plaintiff sought declaratory relief that defendants' DACA withdrawal was unlawful, and injunctive relief preventing defendants from withdrawing DACA and from using DACA recipients' application information in action against them, their families, or their employers.

The case was assigned to Judge Christopher R. Cooper on Sept. 19, 2017.

On Oct. 24, plaintiff filed an amended complaint. The complaint added as plaintiffs the American Federation of Teachers and the United Food and Commercial Workers' International Union. All organizational plaintiffs had DACA-registrant members.

On Nov. 8, defendants moved to dismiss the amended complaint. Defendants argued that plaintiffs lacked standing (as they were not injured as organizations nor did they identify injured members); that defendants' recession of DACA was a non-justiciable exercise of enforcement discretion; that a rational explanation supported defendants' decision under the APA; and that plaintiffs lacked a protected due process interest in DACA.

Plaintiff's response to the motion to dismiss is due Dec. 15, and defendants' reply Jan. 10. A motions hearing will be held on Jan. 31, 2018.

On Dec. 15, plaintiffs moved to submit declarations from nine pseudonymous DACA-recipient members of the organizational plaintiffs.

This case is ongoing.

Ava Morgenstern - 12/16/2017


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Benefit Source
DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals)
Constitutional Clause
Due Process
Defendant-type
Jurisdiction-wide
Discrimination-basis
Race discrimination
General
Confidentiality
Disparate Impact
Public benefits (includes, e.g., in-state tuition, govt. jobs)
Immigration/Border
Constitutional rights
Deportation - criteria
Employment
Status/Classification
Undocumented immigrants - rights and duties
Work authorization - criteria
Work authorization - procedures
National Origin/Ethnicity
Arab/Afgani/Middle Eastern
Hispanic
Plaintiff Type
Non-profit NON-religious organization
Race
Asian/Pacific Islander
Black
Causes of Action Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. ยงยง 551 et seq.
Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. § 2201
Defendant(s) President of the United States
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Department of Justice
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
Plaintiff Description The NAACP, AFT union, and UFCW union, in their organizational capacity on behalf of their DACA-recipient members
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party None Yet / None
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None yet
Source of Relief None yet
Case Ongoing Yes
Case Listing IM-DC-0038 : Trustees of Princeton University v. U.S.A. (D.D.C.)
Additional Resources
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  NAACP Files Lawsuit in Defense of DACA Eligible People of Color
www.naacp.org
Date: Oct. 18, 2017
By: NAACP
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  Memorandum on Rescission Of Deferred Action For Childhood Arrivals (DACA)
www.dhs.gov
Date: Sep. 5, 2017
By: Department of Homeland Security (Department of Homeland Security)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  Implementation of Executive Order 13768, "Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States
The Washington Post
Date: May 22, 2017
By: Jefferson Sessions (U.S. Department of Justice)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  Re: Implementing the President's Border Security and Immigration Enforcement Improvements Policies (Final, 2/20/2017)
dhs.gov
Date: Feb. 20, 2017
By: DHS Secretary John Kelly (United States Department of Homeland Security)
[ Detail ] [ PDF ] [ External Link ]

  Re: Enforcement of the Immigration Laws to Serve the National Interest (Final, 2/20/2017)
dhs.gov
Date: Feb. 20, 2017
By: DHS Secretary John Kelly (United States Department of Homeland Security)
[ Detail ] [ PDF ] [ External Link ]

  Executive Order 13767: Border Security and Immigration Enforcement Improvements
Federal Register
Date: Jan. 27, 2017
By: President Donald Trump (Office of the President)
Citation: 82 Fed. Reg. Presidential Documents 8793 (Jan. 27, 2017)
[ Detail ] [ PDF ]

  Executive Order 13768: Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States
Federal Register
Date: Jan. 25, 2017
By: President Donald Trump (Office of the President)
[ Detail ] [ PDF ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
1:17-cv-1907 (D.D.C.)
IM-DC-0032-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/09/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint [ECF# 1]
IM-DC-0032-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/18/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
[Proposed] First Amended Complaint [ECF# 10]
IM-DC-0032-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/24/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Defendants' Motion to Dismiss or, in the Alternative, for Summary Judgment [ECF# 15]
IM-DC-0032-0003.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/08/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiff's Lawyers Berry, Bradford (Maryland)
IM-DC-0032-0001 | IM-DC-0032-0002
Bowser, Renee L.
IM-DC-0032-0002
Clark, Nicholas (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0032-0002
Cooper, Channing M. (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0032-0002
Horwitz, Julia (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0032-0001 | IM-DC-0032-0002 | IM-DC-0032-9000
Louard, Janette (Maryland)
IM-DC-0032-0001 | IM-DC-0032-0002
McNamara, Douglas J. (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0032-0001 | IM-DC-0032-0002
Rutter, Jessica
IM-DC-0032-0002
Sellers, Joseph Marc (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0032-0001 | IM-DC-0032-0002 | IM-DC-0032-9000
Strom, David J. (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0032-0002
Defendant's Lawyers Bailey, Kate (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0032-0003
Readler, Chad A. (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0032-0003
Ricketts, Jennifer (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0032-0003
Shumate, Brett (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0032-0003
Tyler, John Russell (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0032-0003

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