WASHINGTON — A federal court has once again provisionally blocked the deportation of a Honduran boy in the first legal challenge to the Trump administration’s order restricting immigration at the border based on an unprecedented and unlawful invocation of the Public Health Service Act, located in Title 42 of the U.S. Code.
The American Civil Liberties Union, Center for Gender & Refugee Studies, and Oxfam brought the case on behalf of a 16-year-old Honduran boy and his father.
U.S. District Judge Carl Nichols issued a ruling from the bench today prohibiting the removal of the boy under Title 42 protocols as the lawsuit continues. The judge agreed with the plaintiff’s central argument that the CDC had likely exceeded its authority in ordering the expulsion of children and asylum seekers under the public health laws.
“This ruling is a critical first step in pushing back against the Trump administration’s unprecedented and illegal attempt to remove children and asylum seekers under these public health laws. We are thrilled for this boy and his family,” said ACLU attorney Lee Gelernt, who argued the case.
“Once again, we must rely on the courts to remind the Trump administration that it does not have the power to rewrite the law, and that it cannot sidestep protections for vulnerable children,” said CGRS Legal Director Blaine Bookey.
“Today’s ruling was an important affirmation that the Trump administration cannot simply ignore longstanding humanitarian safeguards designed to protect children fleeing persecution. We hope this marks the beginning of a renewed respect for America's obligations towards asylum seekers,” said Noah Gottschalk, Oxfam America’s humanitarian policy lead.
The lawsuit, J.B.B.C. v. Wolf, was filed in Washington, D.C.
Case details: https://www.aclu.org/cases/jbbc-v-wolf