Federation Files Amicus Brief Supporting Washington State in Travel Ban Case

Posted on Tuesday Feb 7, 2017 11:18 AM

The Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle filed a friend-of-the-court brief late Monday night to support Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson’s litigation against President Trump’s travel ban against immigrants and refugees.

The Federation, founded in 1928 to meet the needs of Seattle’s Jewish community, filed the brief with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit.

“We join this fight to stand with immigrants and refugees - because their story is our story. Jews know, from thousands of years of experience, what it’s like to be torn from our homes through violence. Our sacred texts call us to welcome the stranger, to fight injustice, and to speak out, as often as we must, against the bigotry that is the root cause of anti-Semitism as well as many other forms of discrimination,” Nancy B. Greer, President & CEO of the Jewish Federation, said.

“Our hearts ache when we see families fleeing war, persecution and oppression today, and know that, often, these refugees are fleeing because they helped our United States in our efforts abroad. They deserve our protection now,” Greer said. “They only want, and they deserve, what our parents and grandparents wanted – a chance to build peaceful lives in freedom and safety.”

Washington State has a long history of welcoming people seeking a fresh start. Several of our state’s early leaders in business and government, including a Seattle mayor and territorial governor who was a hero at the Battle of Gettysburg, were Jewish immigrants who embraced with ingenuity and determination the opportunities America promises.

Linda Clifton, Board Member and Chair of the Federation’s Community Relations Committee added, “The story of the Jewish community, like the story of America, is one of refugees and immigrants seeking a better life in our country. We commend Attorney General Ferguson for standing strong for Washington values and for America’s promise, in defense of our Constitution, the rights that it protects, and the rule of law.”

The Federation thanks attorney Matthew P. Bergman of the Seattle law firm Bergman Draper Ladenburg, PLLC, for donating his time to draft the brief.