January 19, 2017
PHOENIX, AZ - Civil and immigrants’ rights groups will present oral argument before a federal court on January 20th, asking the judge to issue a preliminary injunction ordering Arizona to provide driver’s licenses to applicants who have received deferred action.
Background: In September 2016, civil and immigrants’ rights organizations filed a federal lawsuit challenging Arizona’s failure to provide driver’s licenses to all deferred action recipients as a violation of the 14th Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause and the Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution.
MALDEF, NILC and the Ortega Law Firm sued the state on behalf of five individuals, including a survivor of domestic violence, who are unable to obtain a driver’s license because of the state’s discriminatory policy.
The suit comes nearly two years after a federal court of appeals initially struck down a similar attempt by then-Gov. Jan Brewer to bar state officials from issuing licenses to recipients of President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals initiative known as DACA.
Arizona, however, has failed to apply the federal court’s ruling to all deferred action recipients.
Founded in 1968, MALDEF is the nation's leading Latino legal civil rights organization. Often described as the "Latino Legal Voice for Civil Rights in America" MALDEF promotes social change through advocacy, communications, community education, and litigation in the areas of education, employment, immigrant rights, and political access. For more information on MALDEF, please visit: www.maldef.org.