Legal Advocacy

Through our legal advocacy program, Advancing Justice | AAJC influences key civil rights issues that have significant impact on Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders, and immigrant communities, both in the courts and through technical assistance for our Community Partners. We pursue impact litigation in federal courts, file amicus briefs, including in cases before the U.S. Supreme Court, and engage with the broader racial and social justice coalition to advance key issues creatively.

supreme court

Making the Case

AMICUS BRIEFS

Advancing Justice | AAJC led amicus brief efforts in the United States Supreme Court and other federal courts on key issues including immigration, voting rights, and access to technology.

Welcoming Cities Amicus Briefs: City of Chicago v. Sessions (7th Circuit) and City of Philadelphia v. Sessions (3rd Circuit). We submitted briefs in support of Philadelphia and Chicago’s pro-immigrant welcoming policies that help build trust between immigrant communities and law enforcement to create a safer city for all.

Stringer v. Pablo (5th Circuit). Together with the ACLU and Demos, we filed a brief in support of voter registration during online transactions with driver’s license offices in a case seeking Texas’s compliance with the National Voter Registration Act.

Moreno v. Nielsen (EDNY). We submitted a brief in support of Nepali, Yemeni, and Syrian TPS holders facing roadblocks to getting their Green Cards, highlighting the work of our community partner Adhikaar which assisted many Nepalis in applying for Temporary Protected Status.


Metro PCS v. Picker (ND Cal.). We filed an amicus brief in support of improved broadband internet access for communities of color and low-income communities impacted by the digital divide.


IMPACT LITIGATION

Throughout 2018, Advancing Justice | AAJC investigated cases and pursued impact litigation in federal courts, as well as engaged with civil rights partners on strategies for participation in existing litigation.

LUPE et al. v. Ross et al. (DMD). Advancing Justice | AAJC, together with MALDEF, filed a lawsuit in May 2018 alleging that the administration’s addition of a citizenship question to the 2020 decennial Census was motivated by racial animus and will lead to a severe undercount of Latinos, Asian Americans, Native Americans, immigrants, and other populations, depriving these communities of political representation and federal funding. The trial court ruled in our favor, finding that Secretary Ross and Department of Commerce violated the Administrative Procedures Act and the Enumerations Clause of the U.S. Constitution.

Illinois Automatic Voter Registration. Advancing Justice | AAJC sent a pre-litigation notice letter to Illinois officials seeking to enforce the Illinois Automatic Voter Registration statute and compliance with the National Voter Registration Act.

Minnesota Section 208 Compliance. Advancing Justice | AAJC investigated violations of Section 208 of the Voting Rights Act that occurred as a result of an erroneous application of conflicting state law. Under threat of litigation, two counties with the most impacted populations changed their practices, allowing community organizers to assist Limited English Proficient voters at the polls.