Earlier today, the American Civil Liberties Union of Utah Foundation, Inc., along with the ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project (together, the “ACLU”), submitted an amicus (or “friend of the court”) brief to the Utah Supreme Court (the Court) arguing that undocumented immigrants who meet the criteria for bar admission can and should be admitted to the Utah State Bar.
The petitioners in the case are beneficiaries of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which removes the threat of removal action and allows work authorization for certain immigrants who arrived to the United States as children.
Download a PDF of this press release (PDF)
Download a PDF of the ACLU of Utah brief (PDF)
The ACLU was among 11 institutions and law firms submitting amicus briefs in the case of Mary Doe and Jane Doe, two Utah residents and law school graduates with DACA status petitioning to join the Utah State Bar to practice law in this state. Several other states permit DACA recipients to be admitted to the bar.
The ACLU and several other entities were asked by the Court to submit a brief on the question of whether the Court may allow undocumented immigrants to be admitted to the Utah Bar without running afoul of federal law. The ACLU’s answer is an emphatic “yes.”
“We support the ability of Dreamers to reach their professional goals to continue making important contributions to our society,” says John Mejia, Legal Director of the ACLU of Utah. “Because the Utah Supreme Court governs access to the Utah State Bar, we believe that the Court can and should grant admission to DACA recipients and other qualified immigrants.”
John Mejia, Legal Director
(Direct Office) 801-871-0332
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