OAKLAND (CBS SF) — The city of Oakland this week joined dozens of other cities and counties around the country in filing a “friend of the court” brief supporting a lawsuit challenging President Donald Trump’s executive order to deny federal funds to sanctuary cities.

On Wednesday, 34 cities and counties, including Oakland, New Orleans, Chicago, Salt Lake City and Los Angeles, filed the brief in the suit brought by Santa Clara County on Feb. 3 in U.S. District Court in San Francisco.

The brief claims Trump’s order is unconstitutional, in part, because “cities and counties have no obligation to enforce federal laws” and such enforcement is solely the responsibility of the federal government.

“This executive order is just one example of the heartless, lawless and unconstitutional policies of the new administration,” Oakland City Attorney Barbara Parker said in a written statement. “The promise to defund child care, housing, medical and other vital programs of sanctuary cities like Oakland that adopt common sense law enforcement policies would undermine public health and public safety, making our communities less safe.”

The policies of sanctuary cities and counties help law enforcement by ensuring that undocumented people feel safe enough to report crimes, serve as witnesses to crimes and come forward as victims of crime without fear of being turned over to federal immigration officials, Oakland officials said.

The lawsuit seeks a preliminary injunction blocking Trump’s order.

U.S. District Judge William Orrick is scheduled to hold a hearing on the request in his San Francisco courtroom on April 5.

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