While Gov. Abbott Expands His Lawsuit Against Civil Rights Organizations Standing Up to SB4, the City of Austin Joins the Fight Against the State’s “Show Me Your Papers” Bill
Austin, TX – Late last night, and while challenges continue to mount for the “Show Me Your Papers” bill, it was discovered that Gov. Abbott and the State of Texas sued The Texas Civil Rights Project’s client, the Texas Organizing Project Education Fund, LULAC, two counties, numerous local government and law enforcement officials, in addition to their already existing lawsuit against the city of Austin and MALDEF.
Texas is seeking to punish community organizations like TOPEF that have bravely stood up against the State and chill additional groups from coming forward.Texas is expanding its lawsuit at the same time as the City of Austin formally filed the latest challenge to to the discriminatory and anti-immigrant Senate Bill 4 (SB 4) joining San Antonio, El Cenizo, and El Paso in challenging the constitutionality of the law.
FOR A REVIEW OF ALL CURRENT SB4 LAWSUITS, VISIT THE TEXAS CIVIL RIGHTS PROJECT’S GUIDE.
In a statement, the Texas Civil Rights Project’s Executive Director Mimi Marziani said:
It’s clear that Texas is seeking to punish civil rights organizations that have bravely stood up against the State and prevent additional groups from coming forward. Indeed, their lawsuit does not include any specific allegations against groups like our client TOPEF.
Amid widespread public outrage concerning the “show me your papers” bill, Texas took an unprecedented step and decided to sue TCRP’s client, the Texas Organizing Project Education Fund.
We know that Texas’ lawsuit is not a serious attempt to resolve the very real issues raised by SB4, including racial profiling, but rather it is an abuse of the federal court system and a waste of taxpayers’ money.
We cannot allow Texas to intimidate community groups and civil rights organizations from standing up for their members and communities. We will fight, in and out of the courtroom,to stop this dangerous law from going into effect.
Michelle Tremillo, Executive Director for TOPEF said:
If Paxton thought he could intimidate us by adding us to his frivolous lawsuit against Austin, he greatly underestimated our resolve.
We bring to this SB4 fight the resolve of generations of freedom and justice fighters from around the globe. We bring to this fight the resolve that comes from knowing that SB4 is a racist law that would harm communities of color. We bring to this fight the resolve derived from the eternal words of civil rights leaders that tell us that the time for justice is always now.
We will not be intimidated by this lawsuit. In fact, we feel even more empowered and grounded in our fight. And we look forward to showing Paxton the people’s strength, not just in court, but on the streets. We will not stop until SB4 is dead and buried!
Austin City Councilman Greg Casar said in statement:
Elected leaders across the state are following the leadership of community members who have called for a Summer of Resistance against the immoral and unconstitutional SB 4. Austin is proud to join San Antonio, El Paso, and El Cenizo in challenging SB 4 in court for threatening the safety and constitutional rights of our community. I hope that these actions inspire more cities and counties across Texas to draw a line in the sand and defend the rights of all of our community members.