District Digest • February 15, 2017

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D.C. lends support to detained immigrants

The District last week joined 19 other jurisdictions in a court brief supporting the rights of detained immigrants, following support of two briefs opposing President Donald Trump’s travel ban.

In the “friend of the court,” or amicus, brief filed Friday with the U.S. Supreme Court, the cities and counties called for the court to uphold constitutional protections for immigrants held in prolonged detention by the federal government.

Participating cities support a decision from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit mandating that detainees be allowed a bond hearing every six months where a judge can consider their release. The Supreme Court is currently reviewing that appeals decision.

The County of Santa Clara, Calif., authored last week’s amicus brief, joined by a diverse group of local governments across the country. The brief argues that “while some high-risk individuals should remain in custody pending their legal proceedings, many individuals — including immigrants — can safely be released, benefiting their families and communities and generating extensive savings for taxpayers.”

The court case in question, Jennings v. Rodriquez, centers on a lawsuit from the American Civil Liberties Union, representing a group of immigrants who were awaiting deportation for months or years with no opportunity to ask for release.

“It is well-established precedent that every individual in the United States is entitled to due process,” D.C. Attorney General Karl Racine said in a news release. “I am proud to join with jurisdictions across the nation in support of one of our most important constitutional principles.”

In a separate filing last week, Racine joined 16 attorneys general from other U.S. states in an amicus brief supporting Virginia’s lawsuit against President Donald Trump’s executive order on immigration.

The brief argues that the executive order, which would temporarily restrict U.S. entry from seven Muslim-majority nations and suspend refugee entry, poses threats to “the financial stability and intellectual vitality of educational and research institutions, and [disrupts] large and small businesses throughout the States.”

Previously Racine had also joined an amicus brief supporting the lawsuit from Washington state and Minnesota against Trump’s executive order, filed with the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

City posts documents for planning update

As D.C. planners work on amendments to the District’s long-term Comprehensive Plan, they’ve posted a variety of materials online related to the public feedback on their process.

At the website plandc.gov, the city’s Office of Planning has made available materials from the seven public meetings it hosted throughout the city in fall 2016, including presentations, poster boards with area-specific data and maps, and meeting summaries with residents’ comments.

Officials are currently working on amendments to the District’s 20-year Comprehensive Plan, a broad framework that lays out the city’s major planning goals in terms of land use, economic development, transportation and other key issues.

The Planning Office is now in its second round of amendments to the original 2006 Comprehensive Plan, and expects to release proposals this spring, according to a release. The agency encourages residents to provide feedback by emailing plandc@dc.gov or tweeting @OPinDC using the hashtag #PlanDC. Residents can sign up for updates at plandc.gov.

New OB-GYN practice opens in Tenleytown

A new obstetrics and gynecology practice, offering a range of services for women from adolescence through menopause, began taking patients at its Tenleytown office last week.

Bloom OB/GYN, which first operated from a temporary Foggy Bottom office, has just moved to Suite 300 at 4001 Brandywine St. NW. It covers obstetrics, outpatient gynecology, gynecologic surgery and postpartum care. Over time, the practice plans to add acupuncture, lactation services, workshops and other healthbased services, co-owner Flynn Millard O’Neill told The Current.

Bloom marks the latest collaboration of O’Neill, Joan Loveland and Scott Osmun, who bring a collective three decades of women’s health experience. In a “Faces of Washington” feature in Washingtonian magazine, the trio emphasized their focus on innovation, technology and personalized care.

“We listen. We advocate. We communicate openly. We foster healthy lifestyles — now and always. We help women thrive,” they wrote. “For these reasons, Bloom OB/GYN is more than just the Face of Obstetrics and Gynecology, we are the embodiment of excellence in women’s healthcare.”

Appointments can be scheduled by phone at 202-449-9570. The office is open Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.