Julian Gross

James O. Gibson Innovation Fellow

Biography

Julian Gross, James O. Gibson Innovation Fellow, brings his broad experience as a public interest attorney to PolicyLink to develop innovative legal strategies to advance racial and economic equity. Julian has extensive experience in community economic development, having represented community-based organizations and public entities in negotiations of community benefits agreements and a wide range of equitable development strategies.  He has drafted local hiring and contracting policies, negotiated project labor agreements that advance equity goals, and helped design and implement numerous other innovative approaches to capturing economic value for low-income communities. Julian graduated from the University of California, Berkeley School of Law, and served as a Skadden Fellow upon graduation. [See Legal CV]. In his spare time, he plays guitar in swing bands in Oakland and San Francisco.

Court Protects Sanctuary Cities From Trump’s Threats


Sanctuary cities have won protection – for the time being – from President Trump’s threats to pull federal funding from jurisdictions that do not cooperate with his anti-immigrant agenda. In a major victory for sanctuary cities and the advocates who support them, a federal district court in California recently blocked the Trump administration from enforcing an executive order that attempts to pull current and future federal funds from local jurisdictions that adopt sanctuary policies.

Ruling in favor of the City of San Francisco and Santa Clara County, Judge William Orrick held that the President’s attempt to coerce local jurisdictions into assisting in enforcement of federal immigration policy is likely unconstitutional. The court issued a nationwide injunction prohibiting enforcement of the main terms of the executive order. This is a critical ruling for the growing sanctuary city movement, because it protects local jurisdictions from the administration’s threatened legal and fiscal consequences – and validates the strong legal arguments against the President’s executive order, as described below.

Though there is no formal definition of “sanctuary cities,” the name usually refers to local jurisdictions that prohibit their employees from assisting federal authorities with enforcement of immigration laws. This approach is an effort to protect the safety and well-being of residents – particularly those who are targets of increased surveillance and threat, such as immigrants, Muslims, and people of color.  Sanctuary policies have been spreading rapidly, as local leaders have sought to push back against the anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim rhetoric and discrimination that has characterized the new administration.

When President Trump signed executive order 13768 in January, it injected major uncertainty into local budget processes for cities that have adopted sanctuary policies or are considering doing so, and led to widespread confusion regarding the order’s scope and the impact. Because of the amount of federal funds at stake, many local jurisdictions naturally feared the consequences of any cutback in federal funds based on sanctuary policies.

However, the executive order threatened such cuts to a degree well beyond what the law permits. As explained in a letter from over 300 law professors, the Constitution sets out strict limitations that are violated by the broad language of the executive order:

  • the administration can’t add new conditions to existing federal grants;
  • Congress, not the administration, sets the terms of federal grants;
  • the administration cannot “commandeer” local officials to carry out federal policies; and
  • even when Congress wants to add conditions to future grants, the conditions must be closely related to the purposes of the grant.


Taken together, these legal principles greatly limit the threat to federal funding received by sanctuary cities, now and in the future. The court’s ruling validates these principles, and at least temporarily restrains the administration from using federal funding to coerce local jurisdictions.

Though this lower-court ruling could be overruled or modified on appeal, for now, sanctuary cities, counties, and other spaces have gained significant breathing room as they fight to protect their most vulnerable residents. Local officials considering sanctuary policies – and the advocates for our immigrant communities – should keep in mind that the administration’s threats to cut federal funding are largely empty, and are likely to continue to be reined in by the courts.

New Travel Ban Blocked By the Courts, Still Biased against Muslims

<p>The Trump Administration’s revised “travel ban” executive order (a.k.a., the “Muslim ban”) was scheduled to go into effect today.&nbsp; Yesterday and early this morning, federal district courts in Hawaii and Maryland blocked the order’s implementation, on a nationwide basis.&nbsp;These court opinions emphasized the many public statements by the Administration indicating discriminatory intent against Muslims.&nbsp;</p><p>Both courts held that the revised executive order, like the original one, likely violates the Establishment Clause of the constitution.&nbsp;&nbsp;<b>“The clearest command of the Establishment Clause is that one religious denomination cannot be officially preferred over another.”</b>&nbsp; (<a href="https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/03/15/us/politics/document-Orde... v Trump</i>&nbsp;order</a>, p. 29. )</p><p>As we&nbsp;<a href="http://www.policylink.org/blog/new-executive-order-same-illegal-discrimi... the revised executive order was released, its central purpose remains discriminatory.</p><p>The executive order singles out majority-Muslim countries and discriminates against individuals based on religion, race, and national origin.&nbsp; It violates multiple constitutional provisions, and several federal laws.&nbsp; (See&nbsp;<a href="http://www.policylink.org/blog/new-executive-order-same-illegal-discrimi... a full list of legal claims likely to be brought against the executive order, and a detailed description of its provisions.)</p><p>Yesterday’s court opinions emphasized the plainly discriminatory purpose and effect of the Administration’s action, and highlighted the lack of any evidence that the order was based on valid national security objectives. &nbsp;Both courts focused on Administration figures’ multiple public statements indicating that the executive order intentionally targets Muslims:</p><ul><li>The court record “includes&nbsp;<b>significant and unrebutted evidence of religious animus&nbsp;</b>driving the promulgation of the executive order…”&nbsp; (<a href="https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/03/15/us/politics/document-Orde... v Trump</i>&nbsp;order</a>, p. 33.)<br>&nbsp;</li><li>“These statements, which include&nbsp;<b>explicit, direct statements of President Trump's animus toward Muslims</b>&nbsp;<b>and intention to impose a ban on Muslims entering the United States</b>, present a convincing case that the first executive order was issued to accomplish, as nearly as possible, President Trump's promised Muslim ban …&nbsp;In particular, the direct statements by President Trump and (former New York City Mayor Rudy) Giuliani's account of his conversations with President Trump reveal that the plan had been to bar the entry of nationals of predominantly Muslim countries deemed to constitute dangerous territory in order to approximate a Muslim ban without calling it one precisely the form of the travel ban in the first executive order."&nbsp; (<a href="http://apps.washingtonpost.com/g/documents/national/read-the-federal-jud... Refugee Assistance Project v. Trump</i>&nbsp;order</a>, p. 29.)&nbsp;<br>&nbsp;</li></ul><p>PolicyLink stands with advocates for immigrant communities and families around the world in opposing the discriminatory and needless revision of our nation’s longstanding immigration and refugee programs.&nbsp; As these courts have indicated, the travel ban is plainly discriminatory, and violates the most basic principles on which the country was founded.&nbsp; We are confident that courts will continue to protect individual rights against the excesses of this Administration.</p><div style="text-align:start; -webkit-text-stroke-width:0px; margin:0px"><strong><span style="font-size:medium"><span style="color:#212121"><span style="font-family:wf_segoe-ui_normal, &quot;Segoe UI&quot;, &quot;Segoe WP&quot;, Tahoma, Arial, sans-serif"><span style="font-style:normal"><span style="font-variant-ligatures:normal"><span style="font-variant-caps:normal"><span style="font-weight:normal"><span style="letter-spacing:normal"><span style="orphans:2"><span style="text-transform:none"><span style="white-space:normal"><span style="widows:2"><span style="word-spacing:0px"><span style="background-color:#ffffff"><font face="Calibri,sans-serif"><font size="2"><span style="font-size:11pt">Advocacy Resources</span></font></font></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></strong><br>&nbsp;</div><div style="text-align:start; -webkit-text-stroke-width:0px; margin:0px"><span style="font-size:medium"><span style="color:#212121"><span style="font-family:wf_segoe-ui_normal, &quot;Segoe UI&quot;, &quot;Segoe WP&quot;, Tahoma, Arial, sans-serif"><span style="font-style:normal"><span style="font-variant-ligatures:normal"><span style="font-variant-caps:normal"><span style="font-weight:normal"><span style="letter-spacing:normal"><span style="orphans:2"><span style="text-transform:none"><span style="white-space:normal"><span style="widows:2"><span style="word-spacing:0px"><span style="background-color:#ffffff"><font face="Calibri,sans-serif"><font size="2"><span style="font-size:11pt">Following are some of the many organizations working to protect our immigrant communities.</span></font></font></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></div><div style="text-align:start; -webkit-text-stroke-width:0px; margin:0px">&nbsp;</div><div style="text-align:start; -webkit-text-stroke-width:0px; margin:0px"><div style="text-align:start; -webkit-text-stroke-width:0px"><div><div><ul style="margin-top:0px; margin-bottom:0px"><li style="margin:0px"><a href="https://www.nilc.org"><span style="font-size:medium"><span style="color:#212121"><span style="font-family:wf_segoe-ui_normal, &quot;Segoe UI&quot;, &quot;Segoe WP&quot;, Tahoma, Arial, sans-serif"><span style="font-style:normal"><span style="font-variant-ligatures:normal"><span style="font-variant-caps:normal"><span style="font-weight:normal"><span style="letter-spacing:normal"><span style="orphans:2"><span style="text-transform:none"><span style="white-space:normal"><span style="widows:2"><span style="word-spacing:0px"><span style="background-color:#ffffff"><span style="background-color:white"><span lang="en-US" style="background-color:white"><font face="Calibri,sans-serif"><font size="2"><span style="font-size:11pt">National Immigration Law Center</span></font></font></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></a></li><li style="margin:0px"><a href="https://www.ilrc.org/"><span style="font-size:medium"><span style="color:#212121"><span style="font-family:wf_segoe-ui_normal, &quot;Segoe UI&quot;, &quot;Segoe WP&quot;, Tahoma, Arial, sans-serif"><span style="font-style:normal"><span style="font-variant-ligatures:normal"><span style="font-variant-caps:normal"><span style="font-weight:normal"><span style="letter-spacing:normal"><span style="orphans:2"><span style="text-transform:none"><span style="white-space:normal"><span style="widows:2"><span style="word-spacing:0px"><span style="background-color:#ffffff"><span style="background-color:white"><span lang="en-US" style="background-color:white"><font face="Calibri,sans-serif"><font size="2"><span style="font-size:11pt">Immigrant Legal Resource Center</span></font></font></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></a></li><li style="margin:0px"><a href="https://www.aclu.org/issues/immigrants-rights"><span style="font-size:medium"><span style="color:#212121"><span style="font-family:wf_segoe-ui_normal, &quot;Segoe UI&quot;, &quot;Segoe WP&quot;, Tahoma, Arial, sans-serif"><span style="font-style:normal"><span style="font-variant-ligatures:normal"><span style="font-variant-caps:normal"><span style="font-weight:normal"><span style="letter-spacing:normal"><span style="orphans:2"><span style="text-transform:none"><span style="white-space:normal"><span style="widows:2"><span style="word-spacing:0px"><span style="background-color:#ffffff"><span style="background-color:white"><span lang="en-US" style="background-color:white"><font face="Calibri,sans-serif"><font size="2"><span style="font-size:11pt">ACLU Immigrants'&nbsp; Rights Project</span></font></font></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></a></li><li style="margin:0px"><span style="font-size:medium"><span style="color:#212121"><span style="font-family:wf_segoe-ui_normal, &quot;Segoe UI&quot;, &quot;Segoe WP&quot;, Tahoma, Arial, sans-serif"><span style="font-style:normal"><span style="font-variant-ligatures:normal"><span style="font-variant-caps:normal"><span style="font-weight:normal"><span style="letter-spacing:normal"><span style="orphans:2"><span style="text-transform:none"><span style="white-space:normal"><span style="widows:2"><span style="word-spacing:0px"><span style="background-color:#ffffff"><span style="background-color:white"><span lang="en-US" style="background-color:white"><font face="Calibri,sans-serif"><font size="2"><span style="font-size:11pt"><a href="https://www.cair.com/" target="_blank">Council on American-Islamic Relations</a></span></font></font></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></li><li style="margin:0px"><a href="https://www.immigrationadvocates.org"><span style="font-size:medium"><span style="color:#212121"><span style="font-family:wf_segoe-ui_normal, &quot;Segoe UI&quot;, &quot;Segoe WP&quot;, Tahoma, Arial, sans-serif"><span style="font-style:normal"><span style="font-variant-ligatures:normal"><span style="font-variant-caps:normal"><span style="font-weight:normal"><span style="letter-spacing:normal"><span style="orphans:2"><span style="text-transform:none"><span style="white-space:normal"><span style="widows:2"><span style="word-spacing:0px"><span style="background-color:#ffffff"><span style="background-color:white"><span lang="en-US" style="background-color:white"><font face="Calibri,sans-serif"><font size="2"><span style="font-size:11pt">Immigration Advocates Network</span></font></font></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></a></li><li style="margin:0px"><span style="font-size:medium"><span style="color:#212121"><span style="font-family:wf_segoe-ui_normal, &quot;Segoe UI&quot;, &quot;Segoe WP&quot;, Tahoma, Arial, sans-serif"><span style="font-style:normal"><span style="font-variant-ligatures:normal"><span style="font-variant-caps:normal"><span style="font-weight:normal"><span style="letter-spacing:normal"><span style="orphans:2"><span style="text-transform:none"><span style="white-space:normal"><span style="widows:2"><span style="word-spacing:0px"><span style="background-color:#ffffff"><span style="background-color:white"><span lang="en-US" style="background-color:white"><font face="Calibri,sans-serif"><font size="2"><span style="font-size:11pt"><a href="http://www.advancingjustice.org/" target="_blank">Asian Americans Advancing Justice</a></span></font></font></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></li><li style="margin:0px"><span style="font-size:medium"><span style="color:#212121"><span style="font-family:wf_segoe-ui_normal, &quot;Segoe UI&quot;, &quot;Segoe WP&quot;, Tahoma, Arial, sans-serif"><span style="font-style:normal"><span style="font-variant-ligatures:normal"><span style="font-variant-caps:normal"><span style="font-weight:normal"><span style="letter-spacing:normal"><span style="orphans:2"><span style="text-transform:none"><span style="white-space:normal"><span style="widows:2"><span style="word-spacing:0px"><span style="background-color:#ffffff"><span style="background-color:white"><span lang="en-US" style="background-color:white"><font face="Calibri,sans-serif"><font size="2"><span style="font-size:11pt"><a href="https://www.nationalimmigrationproject.org/" target="_blank">National Immigration Project</a></span></font></font></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></li><li style="margin:0px"><span style="font-size:medium"><span style="color:#212121"><span style="font-family:wf_segoe-ui_normal, &quot;Segoe UI&quot;, &quot;Segoe WP&quot;, Tahoma, Arial, sans-serif"><span style="font-style:normal"><span style="font-variant-ligatures:normal"><span style="font-variant-caps:normal"><span style="font-weight:normal"><span style="letter-spacing:normal"><span style="orphans:2"><span style="text-transform:none"><span style="white-space:normal"><span style="widows:2"><span style="word-spacing:0px"><span style="background-color:#ffffff"><span style="background-color:white"><span lang="en-US" style="background-color:white"><font face="Calibri,sans-serif"><font size="2"><span style="font-size:11pt"><a href="https://nobannowallnoraids.wordpress.com/resources/know-your-rights/" target="_blank">#NoBanNoWallNoRaids</a></span></font></font></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></li><li style="margin:0px"><span style="font-size:medium"><span style="color:#212121"><span style="font-family:wf_segoe-ui_normal, &quot;Segoe UI&quot;, &quot;Segoe WP&quot;, Tahoma, Arial, sans-serif"><span style="font-style:normal"><span style="font-variant-ligatures:normal"><span style="font-variant-caps:normal"><span style="font-weight:normal"><span style="letter-spacing:normal"><span style="orphans:2"><span style="text-transform:none"><span style="white-space:normal"><span style="widows:2"><span style="word-spacing:0px"><span style="background-color:#ffffff"><span style="background-color:white"><span lang="en-US" style="background-color:white"><font face="Calibri,sans-serif"><font size="2"><span style="font-size:11pt"><a href="http://altotrump.com/resources/know-your-rights" target="_blank">AltoTrump</a></span></font></font></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></span></li></ul></div></div></div></div><p>&nbsp;</p>