Category Archives: In the news

BREAKING: RITA responds to Obama Announcement on DREAMer deportations

(EL PASO, Texas) — The White House announced today that the administration will provide Deferred Action for some undocumented youth.

The Reform Immigration for Texas Alliance congratulates the undocumented youth whose leadership and bold action forced this announcement. DREAMers have been occupying Obama campaign offices for weeks demanding action. And today, the White House had no choice but to respond. Continue reading


June 15, 2012

WASHINGTON— Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano today announced that effective immediately, certain young people who were brought to the United States as young children, do not present a risk to national security or public safety, and meet several key criteria will be considered for relief from removal from the country or from entering into removal proceedings. Those who demonstrate that they meet the criteria will be eligible to receive deferred action for a period of two years, subject to renewal, and will be eligible to apply for work authorization. Continue reading

10 biggest victories of the 99 percent in the 956 via

This has been a momentous year for the 99 percent in the Rio Grande Valley. From colonia residents finally winning relief for damages caused by Hurricane Dolly to fighting off anti-immigrant legislation, the organizing efforts led by working people have paid off big.

These victories have come largely as a result of people and organizations of different sectors joining together. While we might not always agree on everything, when we join forces to work for the things we do agree on, we are stronger for it. “Juntos pero no revueltos,” as leader Ramona Casas, of colonia organization ARISE says. That doesn’t mean we are mixed up or uniform. We have our differences and, used the right way, they make us stronger.

These victories are not in any specific order.

Colonia residents pose after winning a portion of Precinct 3 budget for installation of streetlights.

1. Colonia residents win streetlights for 10 Hidalgo County colonias. La Union del Pueblo Entero and ARISE

The vast majority of the Rio Grande Valley’s unincorporated neighborhoods are left in the dark nightly. This is beginning to change as colonia residents organize for safer, healthier communities, demanding streetlights be installed by their Hidalgo County Precinct officials. Thanks to these efforts, 10 colonias will see streetlights installed next year.

2. $14 million for drainage projects in Hidalgo County colonias. Equal Voice Network, Texas Low Income Housing and Texas Apple Seed

Hidalgo County Commissioners agreed to devote at least $14 million of Hurricane Dolly Disaster Recovery funds to colonias last month. The victory came as a result of the work of ARISE, LUPE, TOP, Proyecto Azteca and the rest of the Equal Voice Network’s housing and drainage team, who have organized with colonia residents whose homes were damaged by Hurricane Dolly. Colonia residents’ demand that disaster recovery funds go to colonias was backed by Texas Low Income Housing and Texas Apple Seed, who insisted that funding colonias was an absolute requirement for use of the federal funds.

Continue reading

NOW: DREAM Act Supporters Stage Sit-in at KBH’s SA Office

Sit-in Still In Progress, No Arrests Made

Students on hunger strike at UTSA

Students on hunger strike at UTSA

San Antonio- After initiating a state-wide hunger strike in support of the DREAM Act, San Antonio DREAM Act supporters have escalated their actions and staged a sit-in at Senator Hutchison’s San Antonio office. The students, which include DREAM-eligible youth and U.S. citizens, will not leave the office until Senator Hutchison commits to voting for the DREAM Act in the lame duck session.

“Desperate times call for desperate measures,” said My Le. “I wish it didn’t have to come to this, but we don’t have any time to waste.”

“I wish I had celebrated Thanksgiving with my family and friends,” added Felipe Vargas. “But we’ll have our Thanksgiving celebration when the DREAM Act passes.”

Lucina Martinez added, “We know that the Senator understands our plight, that she is sensible, and compassionate. She voted for the DREAM Act in 2007, and her constituent responses were always favorable. She’s only recently changed her tune. We hope to remind her that our futures, that our lives depend on her support.”

Below are the profiles of the four individuals sitting in at Senator Hutchison’s office:

Julio Lopez: His hometown is San Antonio. He is in his last year of undergraduate study at the University of Texas at San Antonio. He is taking a double-major in Anthropology and Mexican American Studies and is an active member of the Mexican American Studies Student Organization.

Lucina Martinez: Born in Mexico City but moved to Dallas, TX with her parents at age 6. She is currently a sophomore at the University of Texas at San Antonio where she is double majoring in Women’s Studies and Mexican American Studies. She’s a DREAM Act beneficiary and is on her 20th day of the Hunger Strike.

Felipe Vargas: Currently finishing doctorate in History, Philosophy and Education Policy from Indiana University Bloomington. He is on the 20th day of the hunger strike.

My Le: Hometown is Saigon, Vietnam. She moved to the United States at the age of 5. She is not a DREAM Act beneficiary but a committed ally. She is currently a sophomore at the University of Texas at San Antonio and is double majoring in Art and Psychology with a minor in Women’s Studies.

Not too long ago, Senator Hutchison was a supporter of the DREAM Act. In 2007, the Senator made a compassionate floor speech in favor of the DREAM Act. In June 2010, the Senator’s constituent responses in regards to the DREAM Act were positive. Below is an excerpt from a June 2010 constituent response from Senator Hutchison on the DREAM Act:

“Among our immigrant population, there are young people who were brought to this country as minors and have not yet attained legal status. These young people have attended and graduated from American high schools. They wish to attend or are attending American colleges and universities in order to enjoy prosperity. Their inability to garner employment following college graduation leaves them in an unfortunate position. I believe that we must find a way to help assimilate these college graduates into our country. In addition to the economic benefit of retaining college graduates in our country, there is a compassionate reason for us to try to work this out.”

For updates, visit the UTSA DREAM Act blog here: