San Antonio activists rally for DACA protected immigrants: It’s their humanity that qualifies

Jessica SA

Despite sobering news for many immigrants in San Antonio, activists said they were galvanized Tuesday night as about 200 people gathered in front of the federal courthouse to announce they would be fighting for permanent protection for so-called Dreamers.

Activists and public officials called for legislation that would offer a path to citizenship for young immigrants who don’t have legal status as well as comprehensive immigration reform.

Karen Torres, a St. Mary’s University student, said that after Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ announcement that the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, known as DACA, would be ending she was “devastated.” Her mother called her distraught, wondering what her future would be, Torres said.

“I came here at the age of five from Nogales, Sonora,” she said. “I love Mexico, I love my country, but I must admit that the United States has been more of a home for me than Mexico has ever been. And the fact that I have been labeled today as an illegal alien, as a criminal, really hurts me, because this is all I know. I am a human being, I am a student, and just as my peers I grew up with, I have a right to those basic privileges they have.”

Jonathan-David Jones from Black Lives Matter at the University of Texas at San Antonio spoke against what he said are “qualifications” given whenever a group is mistreated. He said those who defend DACA by pointing to its economic benefits are missing a broader point.

“We don’t want to qualify immigrants by saying, ‘they’re employees’ or ‘they pay taxes,'” he said. “It’s their humanity. It’s their humanity that qualifies.”

This story originally appeared 9/5/2017 in the San Antonio Express-News.

TOP Congratulates Endorsed Candidate Ron Nirenberg on Winning San Antonio Mayoral Race

Nirenberg

The following is a statement by Michelle Tremillo, executive director of the Texas Organizing Project, on tonight’s election of Ron Nirenberg as San Antonio’s mayor:

“We congratulate Ron Nirenberg on his win, and look forward to working with him in making San Antonio a.more equitable city where all families are able to thrive.

“Our members endorsed and worked hard with our labor allies, the Communication Workers of America and SEIU Texas, to elect Nirenberg because they saw him as the candidate who would fight for underserved neighborhoods and would lead the effort to close the greatest-in-the-nation economic inequality gap.

“During the runoff, TOP talked to more than 13,000 voters, at their doors and on the phone to get out the vote and have our community’s voice heard.

“It’s clear from tonight’s results that a majority of voters share our view that San Antonio needs new leaders that when faced with a justice crisis like SB4, won’t say not now.

“At TOP, we believe that electing our endorsed candidates is just the beginning. Now comes the hard work of keeping all of our elected officials accountable. We’re ready to work with Mayor-Elect Nirenberg to create a city that works for ALL San Antonians.”

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Texas Organizing Project organizes Black and Brown communities in Texas’ three largest counties with the goal of transforming Texas into a state where working people of color have the power and representation they deserve. For more information, visit organizetexas.org.

TOP announces endorsed candidates for San Antonio City Council

SA hires skyline

The Texas Organizing Project (TOP) has released its list of endorsed city council candidates who show the most commitment to tackling the city’s challenges of racial and economic disparities, particularly in the areas of employment, housing, immigration and criminal justice.

TOP, under the platform #SA4ALL, is knocking on doors this municipal election urging the participation of infrequent voters by promoting a four-pronged solution to inequality in San Antonio: Creating more good-paying jobs, expanding neighborhoods of opportunity, protecting our families and immigrant neighbors, and granting more second chances while reforming our local criminal justice system.

Early voting is Monday, April 24 through Tuesday, May 2. Election Day is Saturday, May 6.

For more information on TOP’s #SA4ALL campaign, please visit www.sa4all.org.

Endorsements:
San Antonio Mayor: (No endorsement)
City Council, District 1: Michael Montaño
City Council, District 4: Rey Saldaña
City Council, District 5: Shirley Gonzalez
City Council, District 7: Ana Sandoval

Pol. adv. paid for by Texas Organizing Project