Palo Alto – March 31, 2017 – Cooley and Law Foundation of Silicon Valley together filed amicus briefs challenging the Trump Administration’s executive order threatening federal funding for “sanctuary jurisdictions” nationwide. The briefs express support for lawsuits filed by the County of Santa Clara and the City and County of San Francisco in the Northern District of California, challenging the applicable provisions of the executive order. The briefs demonstrate that uncertainty created by the order causes real and imminent harm to nonprofits and to the clients and communities they serve.
The order, which was signed on January 25, 2017, empowers the federal government to withhold federal funds from jurisdictions that are designated as “sanctuary jurisdictions." The amicus briefs were filed separately on March 22 and March 29 on behalf of community-based nonprofit organizations and associations of nonprofit organizations in the health and human services sector.
Many nonprofit organizations rely on federal funding that states, counties and municipalities receive and pass through to them to provide services. “It is a frightening reality that funding for nonprofit organizations and the vital programs they provide to the community is in jeopardy, and it is evident that the community is anxious about the threatened loss of services,” said Debbi Lerman, administrator at the San Francisco Human Services Network, one of the amici curiae in both briefs. “Our briefs depict to the court how federal funding cuts will severely and negatively impact community initiatives by endangering programs that provide preventive healthcare, meals for seniors, HIV/AIDS assistance, domestic violence services and mental health treatment. This puts both vulnerable individuals and the community at large at risk.”
“We’re proud to combine our efforts with the amazing team at Law Foundation of Silicon Valley to ensure that all individuals have equal access to crucial resources provided by nonprofits in their communities,” said Maureen Alger, partner with Cooley. “Cooley is honored to help provide a voice to the nonprofits that work so hard to better their communities.”
The cases are County of Santa Clara v. Donald J. Trump and City and County of San Francisco v. Donald J. Trump. The Law Foundation of Silicon Valley team includes Kyra Kazantzis, Diana Castillo and Nadia Aziz; Cooley’s team is led by pro bono partner Maureen Alger and includes Monique Sherman, Matthew Ezer, Jessie Simpson LaGoy, Azadeh Morrison and Samantha Kirby.
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