MassTLC, policy

MassTLC had role in Hawaii case that blocked Trump immigration order

The Massachusetts Technology
Leadership Council filed an amicus brief in support of a Hawaii lawsuit that
led on Wednesday evening to a temporary nationwide block of President Donald Trump‘s latest executive order on
MassTLC, an
advocacy group representing some of the largest tech companies in the state,
filed the brief with the federal district court in Hawaii on Tuesday, calling
the pending immigration rules illegal, arbitrary, discriminatory and
antithetical to the values of the Massachusetts technology industry.

The group
argued that immigrants play a vital role in the tech industry, both by filling
jobs that American workers cannot and by starting companies that now employ
thousands of people in Massachusetts. It wrote that the executive order
“substantially undermines the ability of the Massachusetts technology
industry to compete in the international marketplace” by, among other
things, discouraging potential investors and customer from traveling to the
U.S. and discouraging talented students from studying at local universities.
submitted the brief in support of a lawsuit brought by the state of Hawaii and
a Muslim resident. The lawsuit argued that the executive order Trump signed on
March 6 – which would temporarily ban the issuance of new travel visas to
citizens of six Muslim-majority countries – violated the constitution because
it discriminated against some residents based on their religion and nation of

The federal
judge’s ruling on Wednesday evening did not decide whether or not the executive
order is unconstitutional. It banned the administration from enacting the new
rules until the case proceeds.

Mike Keating, an attorney at Foley Hoag that
partnered with MassTLC on the brief, said he chose to support the Hawaii
lawsuit, as opposed to several others filed in courts around the country,
because it was the case most likely to halt the immigration rules nationally
before they went into effect on March 16.

Hopcroft, MassTLC’s president and CEO, said the brief came out of work the
coalition began after Trump’s previous executive order on
immigration in January. That order was similar to the current attempt at a
travel ban, but also applied to current visa holders, which sent the
Massachusetts tech community into a panic.

MassTLC began talking with member companies about how such a ban
might affect their employees. Even after that version of the ban was thrown out
by a different federal court, MassTLC remained concerned about “a broad
chilling effect,” Hopcroft said.

is distributed evenly across population in the world,” Hopcroft said.
“Those skilled workers now will be finding other places around the world
to start and grow their businesses.

Original post:http://www.bizjournals.com/boston/news/2017/03/15/mass-tech-grouphad-role-in-hawaii-case-that.html

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