Category Archives: Uncategorized

Our blog has moved

Thanks for visiting LUPE’s blog. We are moving up in the world and are no longer using this site. Find us at http://launiondelpuebloentero.nationbuilder.com/blog. Entries published before April 14, 2014 can be found below. For all our newer content, visit our new blog.

Thanks!

Give the Gift of ¡Claro que Se Puede!

The season of giving is here. Get a great gift and advance your progressive values at the same time! Donate to La Union del Pueblo Entero and receive a farmworker movement holiday gift – and give the gift of ¡Claro que Se Puede! this holiday season.

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Make a donation of $50 to $99 and receive Proyecto de Amor, a 15 track CD with the inspirational song ¡Claro que Se Puede! featuring Carlos Santana, Willie Nelson, Ramon Ayala and more. Donate now.

¡Claro Que Se Puede! is an inspiration song that blends historic sounds of the farmworker movement with the modern sounds of Carlos Santana, Los Lonely Boys and more. It captures the spirit of the movement for immigrant rights, one rooted in our varied histories and traditions, and coming together in celebration of one another. Continue reading

Celebrate Giving Tuesday by sharing your #UNselfie

Today is Giving Tuesday, which means people all over the world are sharing in the giving spirit. From volunteering, to donating, to promoting your favorite causes, today is the perfect day to show others what you care about.

Participate in Giving Tuesday by sharing your #UNselfie!

unselfie - jmtFrom GivingTuesday.org: “A #UNselfie is an unselfish or selfless #selfie (click if you don’t know what a selfie is). Take a photo of someone or something that represents giving to you and upload to your social media platform of choice via hashtag #unselfie and #givingtuesday.”

Let us know what you care about–Share your #UNselfie with us!

Take an #UNselfie and share it with us on our Facebook page or tweet at us @LUPE_rgv. Make sure to use the hashtags #UNselfie and #GivingTuesday when you do!

You can also share this image on Facebook and help us reach more people in the giving spirit:
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They denied her rights. She lost her life.

STOP DENYING OUR RIGHTS!

Immigration officials denied her rights. She lost her life. Now Congress wants to increase abuse by doubling border enforcement. Will you stand up for her family by calling Congress?

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Call your congressperson and tell them not to increase border enforcement that denies the rights of border community members:

“Please do not allow amendments to immigration reform that would increase civil and human rights abuses by increasing border enforcement. We need border enforcement that is accountable to border communities, not more border enforcement.”

Call the US Capitol switchboard at (202) 224-3121 and ask for your House representative

When you’re done, tell us how the call went here.

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This young mother was murdered in Mexico after being deported.

A civil rights lawsuit against agents of the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has been filed on behalf of three minor children. Their mother, Laura S. was brutally murdered in Mexico after she was wrongfully deported by immigration authorities.

Laura S. was twenty-two years old and the mother of three small children when she was stopped for a minor traffic violation and turned over to a Border Patrol agent in 2009. For many years she had been severely battered by her abusive boyfriend, Sergio H. and had recently obtained the protection of the local police and courts of law. Enraged, Sergio returned to Mexico, threatening to kill her.

When turned over to immigration authorities, Laura S. begged ICE and Customs and Border Protections officials not to return her to Mexico. She explained that she would be killed by her violent ex-boyfriend, that she had protective orders from the courts, and that she had three small children at home. Although she had the right to a hearing in front of an immigration judge and was eligible for relief from immigration courts, she was given no hearing. Instead, the agents forced her back into Mexico within hours. She continued to weep and plead all the way to the bridge.

Within days Sergio H. found Laura S. in Reynosa and attacked her, nearly biting off her ear. He then abducted and strangled her, leaving her body in a burning car.

We hope that this case will prove a catalyst for support for increased accountability measures for border enforcement. Some congressmen want to increase border enforcement. Doing so will ensure that these kinds of abuses continue. We don’t need more border enforcement. We need accountable border enforcement that protects people’s civil and human rights.

More on Laura S. here.

John Cornyn Proposes Changes that Could Derail Immigration Bill

The following is a press statement from United We DREAM:

DREAMers Challenge Sen. Cornyn’s Hypocritical Maneuvering Intended to Kill Immigration Bill

WASHINGTON, D.C.– With news today that Senator Cornyn plans to introduce sweeping changes to the border security provisions of the Senate immigration reform, attacking the already heavily negotiated bipartisan bill that goes much too far on border militarization as it is, United We Dream is pushing back.  Julieta Garibay, United We Dream’s Legislative Affairs Associate and a DREAMer from Texas, released the following statement:

Senator John Cornyn’s proposed changes to the immigration bill—extreme and unworkable measures that would jeopardize the path to citizenship and further militarize our border—are thinly veiled attempts to kill the bill.   This bipartisan proposal already dedicates more government money to excessive border security than ever before and will continue to criminalize our communities.

DREAMers from his own state of Texas and across the country are outraged that he is attempting to masquerade as a reasonable negotiator on immigration reform when his obstructionist agenda is clear.  It’s time for leaders of both parties to distance themselves from Senator Coryn’s antics and move forward with passing a bill that creates a real roadmap to citizenship, keeps families together and reunites families who’ve been separated, and ends senseless deportations and abuses.

Our nation is in need of real leaders with the courage to do the right thing for our families.  Senator Cornyn is the opposite of what we need—a  hypocrite who’s determined to stall the momentum our movement has built.  After years of blocking progress on immigration reform and pushing policies that harm our families, Senator Cornyn has made his record clear and DREAMers will not tolerate his continued obstruction.

The following is a press statement from Reform Immigration for Texas Alliance (RITA):

Texas Senators’ Recent Actions Put Them At Odds with Texas Families and American Values 

Instead of standing up for the kind of reform that Texans demand, Cornyn and Cruz are fighting for more criminalization and militarization 

Senators John Cornyn and Ted Cruz are continuing their out-of-touch assault on the bipartisan push for immigration reform. In doing so, they are in direct opposition to what the majority of Texans and Americans want.

Sen. Cruz joined other anti-immigrant extremists in the Senate by releasing a letter that says the bill doesn’t go far enough to militarize the border and rejects the pathway to citizenship that an ever growing majority of Americans support. In it, he re-affirms that he rejects immigration reform and isn’t interested in solving anything. In a state like Texas, this means fighting against the interests of millions of Texas families and Latino voters.

Meanwhile, Sen. Cornyn seems determined to derail the bill’s progress. Cornyn filed an amendment that would aggressively and completely seal the border. His amendment would also block the pathway to citizenship until a set of militarization goals are met on the border. The type of border Cornyn is trying to create puts all Americans’ rights on the line and would sacrifice an important part of the Texas state economy.

Both senators insist on repeating a 25-year-old talking point that the border must be secured first.  “But a lot has changed on the border since 1986,” said Fernando Garcia, executive director of Border Network for Human Rights and executive committee member of RITA. “For the senators to call for more militarization shows that they are out-of-touch with the reality on the ground. They certainly don’t seem to be talking about the Texas-Mexico border that we see.”

RITA calls on the senators to listen to Texans and stop their attempts to derail or kill immigration reform.

ACLU of Texas Reacts to Lethal Shooting of Unarmed Pickup Passengers

HOUSTON – ACLU of Texas Executive Director Terri Burke today called upon state officials to fully investigate the fatal shooting of unarmed persons in a moving vehicle on an open road by a Department of Public Safety (DPS) sharpshooter from overhead in a pursuit helicopter.

“If initial reports are accurate,” said Burke, “the DPS has starting executing persons who they merely suspect of the civil offense of unlawful entry into the United States.” Initial news reports indicate that a DPS sharpshooter in a helicopter responded to calls for assistance by a game warden in high speed pursuit of a motor vehicle suspected of transporting undocumented immigrants. News reports said at least two persons died in the Thursday incident which occurred near the small town of La Joya near the Texas-Mexico border in the Lower Rio Grande Valley.

“We are eager to hear the facts in this case. What we know so far raises disturbing questions,” said Burke. “Why is a state game warden involved in enforcement of federal immigration law? Why is a game warden in dangerous high speed pursuit of people who were suspected of nothing more than a civil offense? And where’s the ‘public safety’ when a trooper in a helicopter opens fire on unarmed persons in a vehicle on a public road?”

Dolores Huerta, Spreading a Legacy of Love

LUPE leaders with Dolores Huerta (center) on Tuesday in McAllen. Click photo for more pictures from the event.

This week, members of the Union visited with UFW co-founder Dolores Huerta during two events planned by the Hermes Music Foundation to honor the farmworker leader’s “legacy of love.”

The Dolores Huerta Foundation and the Hermes Music Foundation have worked together to contribute to the empowerment of local communities through music, including distributing instruments to farmworker youth and promoting the CD, “Claro Que Se Puede,” which features artists like Carlos Santana, Ramon Ayala and Willie Nelson.

Dolores Huerta and Hermes Music founder Alberto Kreimerman see their work as complementing each other. Kreimerman says that Dolores Huerta and her foundation spread love and acceptance through community organizing and political awareness. And Huerta sees Kreimerman’s work spreading music as an important part of the empowerment of the communities her foundation serves.

At a press conference Tuesday, as a testament to the labor leader’s dedication to others, Huerta shared her own spotlight by recognizing the contribution of LUPE director Juanita Valdez-Cox and other LUPE members and former UFW leaders for their contribution to improvements in Texas. Under the direction of Rebecca Flores, Juanita worked as an organizer for the United Farm Workers in South Texas. Her and farmworker leaders throughout the state organized for and won clean water and toilets for agricultural workers and workers’ compensation for on-the-job injuries, among other farmworker victories. Now, as director of LUPE, Juanita leads the organization’s efforts to improve living conditions for Hidalgo County’s over 150,000 colonia residents.

Huerta said that her foundation is doing work very similar to our own work with colonia residents. She said that in California there are also neighborhoods without paved roads, streetlights and proper drainage. All funds raised by her foundation go to employing organizers from low-income working class communities and training them using a grassroots organizing model. Natural leaders are developed by their participation in community projects, which they prioritize by analyzing their neighborhood and community needs.
To learn more and support the Dolores Huerta Foundation, visit their website at http://www.doloreshuerta.org/