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Innovation Law Lab Files Motion to Stay Nationwide Injunction in Arizona v. CDC

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Posted: Jun. 6, 2022

For Immediate Release
June 6, 2022

Arianna Rosales, National Immigration Project,

New Orleans, LA - Innovation Law Lab, a non-profit organization that seeks to advance refugee and immigrant justice, has filed a motion to stay the nationwide scope of the injunction issued in Arizona v. CDC, a case brought in the Western District of Louisiana by Arizona, Texas, and 22 non-border states seeking to stop the Biden administration's termination of the Title 42 order.

"The dangerous and unlawful nationwide injunction in Arizona v. CDC must be stayed immediately—as a matter of life and death," said Tess Hellgren, Deputy Legal Director for Innovation Law Lab. "Just last week, a funeral was held for two Haitians-Jocelyn Anselme and Calory Archange-whose lives were unjustly taken from them in Tijuana while they waited for the U.S. to allow them to apply for asylum. If it weren't for Title 42, our organization could have been providing legal representation for Jocelyn and Calory, instead of mourning their deaths. Title 42 is literally killing people by not allowing them to seek asylum in the United States."

The nationwide injunction issued by Judge Robert R. Summerhays of the federal court in the Western District of Louisiana effectively grants Arizona and Texas' demands to continue the implementation of Title 42 along the entire southern border, even in California and New Mexico, two states that are not parties to the lawsuit. In their motion to stay Judge Summerhays' nationwide injunction, Immigration Law Lab explains:

It is undisputed that the district court's order imposes significant burdens on people who will never harm the Plaintiff States, because it bars access to the asylum system for people who have no intention of ever leaving California or New Mexico. And the injunction greatly harms Law Lab's interests in assisting such individuals, even though they will never burden any Plaintiff State.

Represented by the Center for Immigration Law and Policy at the UCLA School of Law (CILP) and the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild, Innovation Law Lab has sought to intervene in Arizona v. CDC and filed an amicus brief for the sole purpose of arguing that even if the court agreed with Arizona and Texas, and ruled that the Title 42 order should remain in place, that that order should be limited to the suing states, and not slam the door shut on people who seek refuge in California and New Mexico.

"For more than two years, Title 42 has cruelly and arbitrarily prevented people from exercising their right to seek asylum in the United States," said Matt Vogel, Supervising Attorney at the National Immigration Project (NIPNLG) "Given the extent of the harm the nationwide scope of the injunction is causing in places that are not even party to this litigation, the scope of the injunction should at the very least be limited only to the states involved in the litigation and should be stopped from applying nationwide."

Nationwide injunctions in lawsuits filed by only a portion of states run contrary to law and undermine the rights of states who have a different view from the Plaintiffs'. This dangerous misuse of injunction authority shows how the judicial branch is being misused and politized.

The CDC issued an order terminating Title 42, which was set to take effect on May 23, 2022. But because of the nationwide injunction Judge Summerhays ordered on May 20, refugees at the border continue to be indefinitely blocked from seeking asylum by Title 42. In Mexican border cities, they often face homelessness, and are at great risk of becoming victims of crime, including kidnapping and murder. Innovation Law Lab and other organizations stand ready to help people and families seeking asylum on our Southern border, but are unable to do so because of Title 42.

"The nationwide injunction the court ordered has effectively allowed states like Arizona and Texas to force the continued implementation of the dangerous Title 42 order along the entire Southern border, at the expense of states, organizations, and people that are not parties to this lawsuit," said Monika Y. Langarica, staff attorney for the Center for Immigration Law and Policy at UCLA Law. "Title 42 causes unspeakable harm to people who seek nothing more than protection for themselves and their families. In contrast, the states that brought this case have failed to prove that people who seek asylum in places like California and New Mexico will cause them harm that justifies such a sweeping order. At the very least, the Fifth Circuit should limit the injunction to the states that brought this lawsuit while it considers our appeal."


The National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild (NIPNLG) is a national non-profit organization that provides technical assistance and support to community-based immigrant organizations, legal practitioners, and all advocates seeking and working to advance the rights of noncitizens. NIPNLG utilizes impact litigation, advocacy, and public education to pursue its mission. Learn more at Follow NIPNLG on social media: National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild on Facebook, @NIPNLG on Twitter and Instagram.