FASoS Research used in important court case Donald Trump vs Hawaii

Research by Karlijn Haagsman, Valentina Mazzucato and Bilisuma Dito has been used in an important Supreme Court case in the US: President Trump vs Hawaii. This case assessed whether the controversial ‘Muslim Ban’ of President Trump violates the Constitution or immigration laws of the United States. It was used to argue that family separation resulting from this ban causes irreparable harm and has negative physical & mental health consequences.

The case Trump v. Hawaii (Case No. 17-965) has been a very important court case in the US. The controversial ban prohibits most individuals from amongst others Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, and Somalia entering the US. Earlier lower courts considered the ban unconstitutional. The state of Hawaii also challenged the ban and as a result a federal court obstructed its implementation. As President Donald Trump still wanted to implement the ‘Muslim’ Ban he brought the case to the Supreme court (the top US court), which led to this Supreme Court case.

The article by Haagsman, Mazzucato and Dito (2015) was cited and direct quotations were used in the brief amici curiae of Labor Organizations submitted to the court in March 2018. In the document they argue that like the two Executive Orders preceding it, the Proclamation separates families and prevents parents and children from visiting each other. From the article by Haagsman et al. (2015) they take that limited physical interaction resulting from geographic separation can challenge intimate parent-child relations. Moreover, that frustrated efforts to maintain these bonds and resulting feelings of loss of intimacy can cause emotional distress for both parents and children. Hence, they used it to argue that family separation that the ‘Muslim Ban’ causes irreparable harm and has negative physical & mental health consequences.

Unfortunately, after a long litigation process, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of President Donald’s Trump ‘Muslim Ban’’ on June 26, 2018. In the 5-4 opinion the court found that the travel ban fell within the president’s authority. While the White House issued a statement calling it a tremendous victory and some judges argued that it was needed to uphold President Trump’s authority, many human rights and immigration lawyers and activists see this as one of the courts greatest failures.

The article used is:
Haagsman, K., Mazzucato, V., & Dito, B. B. (2015). Transnational families and the subjective well-being of migrant parents: Angolan and Nigerian parents in the Netherlands. Ethnic and Racial Studies, 38 (15), 2652-2671. DOI: 10.1080/01419870.2015.1037783

The full brief amici curiae of Labor Organizations (No. 17-965) can be accessed online. Full proceedings of the court case can be accessed here.

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