National Organizations Condemn Governor Abbott for Signing Senate Bill 4

National Organizations Condemn Governor Abbott for Signing Senate Bill 4

May 13, 2017
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Dear Governor Abbott,

We the undersigned faith, labor, civil rights and social justice organizations, which represent a wide cross section of America’s diverse communities, strongly condemn your decision to sign into law the unconstitutional, racist and anti-immigrant Senate Bill 4. As Governor of Texas, your duty is to protect and defend the rights of ALL Texans -- undocumented immigrants are Texans through and through -- but you have clearly failed in doing this.

Senate Bill 4 will discriminate against people of color, separate families, and negatively impact the civil rights and economy of all Texans. You had the power to stop this, but you didn’t, and generations of young Texans will remember this.

SB 4 will institutionalize racial profiling. We know that these anti-immigrant laws that conscript local law enforcement into immigration agents disproportionately impact our Black and Latino working class communities. As a result, under this law, any person that is perceived to be an immigrant -- people of color, anyone with a foreign accent -- stands to be asked for their papers.

SB 4 will separate families and put our children in danger. Studies have shown that children suffer emotionally and physically when they are constantly worried that their parents will be deported. According to a study by Human Impact Partners, thousands of children who had a parent deported in 2012 showed symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, as well as anxiety, and many were afraid most or all of the time.1 Instead of focusing on school and doing their homework, children will be constantly worried about what could happen to their parents.

Texas will also feel the negative economic consequences of your decision to sign this hate-filled bill into law. 900,000 immigrant workers help to sustain Texas’ economy and just removing the unauthorized workers in Texas today would reduce the state’s gross domestic product by more than $60 billion annually.2 The state of Arizona lost $490 million in tourism revenues in one year due to a nationwide boycott following the enactment of Senate Bill 1070, which was then largely overturned by the United States Supreme Court.3 If SB 4 goes into effect, this will also happen in Texas.

Governor Abbott, your decision to sign this bill into law has created massive resistance against it and we will fight it politically, economically, and legally. We know we will win because we are on the just and moral side.

Sincerely,

The undersigned national organizations:

350.org 
Advocates for Youth 
African American Ministers In Action (AAMIA)
Alliance for Citizenship 
Alliance for Quality Education 
America's Voice 
American Civil Liberties Union of Texas 
Asian Americans Advancing Justice - AAJC 
Asian Americans Advancing Justice-LA 
Bend the Arc Jewish Action 
Center for American Progress 
Church World Service 
Color Of Change 
Congregation of Our Lady of Charity of the Good Shepherd, US Provinces 
CREDO 
Democracy for America 
Demos 
Familia: Trans Queer Liberation Movement 
Forward Together 
Franciscan Action Network 
Friends of the Earth 
Greenpeace USA 
Human Rights Campaign 
Immigrant Legal Resource Center 
Interfaith Worker 
Justice Jobs With Justice 
Labor Council for Latin American Advancement
Latino Victory Fund 
League of United Latin American Citizens 
Los Angeles LGBT Center 
Million Hoodies 
MomsRising.org 
MoveOn.org 
Muslim Alliance for Sexual and Gender Diversity
National Advocacy Center of the Sisters of the Good Shepherd 
National Center for Transgender Equality 
National Council of Jewish Women 
National Council of La Raza 
National Domestic Workers Alliance 
National Employment Law Project 
National Immigrant Justice Center 
National Immigration Law Center 
National Justice for Our Neighbors 
National LGBTQ Task Force Action Fund
NETWORK Lobby for Catholic Social Justice 
Our Revolution 
Presente.org 
ProgressNow 
Service Employees International Union (SEIU)
Showing Up for Racial Justice Action (SURJ Action) 
Southeast Asia Resource Action Center (SEARAC)
T'ruah: The Rabbinic Call for Human Rights 
The Center for Popular Democracy 
UltraViolet 
Unitarian Universalist Service Committee 
United Church of Christ, Justice and Witness Ministries 
United We Dream 
Voto Latino 
 
Notes:
1 http://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/healthcare/279544-immigration-deporting-parents-negatively-affects-kidshealth
 
2 https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/immigration/reports/2016/09/21/144363/the-economic-impacts-ofremoving-unauthorized-immigrant-workers/
 
3 http://www.deseretnews.com/article/705366423/Arizonans-highlight-economic-cost-of-tough-immigration-law.html