The following statement was made by Michelle Tremillo, Executive Director for Texas Organizing Project (TOP), in reaction to the group’s electoral efforts in San Antonio:
“From surviving in a pandemic, to witnessing police brutality, to enduring a brutal winter storm, this past year has been an especially challenging one for Black and Latino San Antonians. In response, TOP members were ready to roll up their sleeves this local election to fight for the police accountability our communities deserve, as well as the resources, representation, and responsiveness we need at the local level to recover. Our endorsements this election reflected these priorities.
“The successful bids to secure runoffs by our endorsed candidates, Roberto Treviño (District 1), Jalen McKee-Rodriguez (District 2), and Teri Castillo (District 5) – progressives who advocated for Prop B – shows that police accountability matters to San Antonians and that we want champions who will give a voice to the change our community needs.
“Our canvass, phonebank, and texting teams engaged with more than 46,200 voters across Districts 1, 2, and 5 multiple times, fueling their strong early vote showings on election night.
“We commend them for running rigorous, inspiring campaigns and look forward to powering them to victory to bring bold policy ideas to City Hall on issues ranging from affordable housing to environmental justice, and of course, police accountability.”
Kevin La Melle, a San Antonio TOP member said the following in response to San Antonio’s Proposition B:
“In the fall of last year, TOP joined our allies Fix SAPD, and other partners, in gathering thousands of petition signatures from voters in all parts of San Antonio who agreed that we need more measures in place locally that add more accountability to our police force.
“While not our desired outcome, Saturday night’s result still fills us with hope for the future of our city. It is clear that nearly half of municipal voters want reform. What started as a petition drive against considerable odds grew and sparked a conversation that must continue in San Antonio, making even clearer the urgent need for action. We will be monitoring SAPOA’s contract negotiations every step of the way and expect city leaders to stand strong on the side of our communities.
“It’s also now incumbent upon Mayor Nirenberg and City Council to work with the community to deliver solutions that not only hold police officers accountable for misconduct, but transform our city’s approach to public safety to ensure all residents are treated with dignity and respect.”
Texas Organizing Project organizes Black and Latino communities in Dallas, Harris and Bexar 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.
This statement was sent out May 3, 2021.