Central Texas Residents Gather to Learn About SB4 and Create a Community Plan to Fight Back

For Immediate Release

June 17, 2017

Contact: Tania Mejia, 979-308-9634, tania@jolttx.com; Armando Carmona, 323-250-3018, armando@ndlon.org

 Central Texas Residents Gather to Learn About SB4 and Create a Community Plan to Fight Back

Austin, TX – On Saturday morning, Central Texas residents joined a Community Town Hall on Texas Senate Bill 4 (SB4) to learn how the law will impact the lives of immigrants and community members who are subject to racial profiling and discrimination. SB4, signed into law by Texas Governor Greg Abbott, is considered one of the most racist and hateful laws of recent history. Since its passage, community members from throughout the state of Texas, and around the country, have begun to organize themselves by learning about their rights and thinking about ways to fight back against unjust legislation.

Salvador G. Sarmiento, National Campaign Coordinator for NDLON said: “Like Arizona in 2010, today, Texas is ground zero in the fight against extremist hate legislation.  Our message today is that beyond knowing our rights, the moment demands that we speak out, that we organize, and defy this racist law.   To be sure, the movement for non-compliance is underway.” NDLON played a key role in the community organizing efforts in Arizona against SB-1070 and is part of efforts in Texas.

“SB4 will not only impact immigrants, it will affect Latinos and Tejanos who have lived in the state of Texas for generations, African Americans and indigenous people,” said Cristina Tzintzun Executive Director of Jolt. “That’s why we are fighting back and resisting this unjust law. We are beginning by educating ourselves and our community about the widespread impacts, how this law will discriminate against communities of color and how it’s linked to historical practices of racist policing and immigration enforcement. Today we saw a community hungry for action and for justice,” she added.

The town hall was hosted by Jolt, a Latino civic engagement organization, the National Day Laborer Organizing Network (NDLON) and Univision 62. Edna Yang, Executive Director of the immigration legal aid organization American Gateways was present at the event to inform attendees about their rights.

Austin Council Member Ann Kitchen and Travis County Commissioner Margaret Gomez were also present to share how the city of Austin and Travis County are planning to protect residents in the face of the racist law. “We have filed a lawsuit against the state and SB4,” said Councilmember Ann Kitchen. Commissioner Gomez added, “here is Travis county we will recognize our resident’s rights, and we will be united in protecting and fighting for each other.”

 The town hall is part of the #BastaTexas campaign, an effort to organize local communities in Texas to stop SB4 and put an end to discriminatory and hurtful legislation. To continue to arm the resistance and promote grassroots organizing, the campaign launched an organizing toolkit. The toolkit, which can be downloaded at https://bastatexas.org/resources/toolkit/ will inform the public about their rights and give them important tools to host know your rights organizing meetings in their homes and their communities.


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