In the Rio Grande Valley, immigration activists are making their voices heard in opposition of SB 4.
La Union del Pueblo Entero [LUPE] protested in McAllen to ask supporters to stand up against Governor Greg Abbott.
“Banning sanctuary cities and keeping dangerous criminals off the streets is a top priority in Texas.”
This is what the governor said during the signing of the highly controversial SB 4 bill. But pro-immigration groups are calling the new law racist and discriminatory.
McAllen Resident Monte Adams said, “It’s racially motivated. I’m just going to be honest, white folks let white folks get away with white folk issues. You can have somebody go in and shoot up a church, no new laws. Somebody who’s shooting up a school, no new laws. Somebody comes to America to make more money, and it’s a law?”
Immigration activists stood their ground, and their fear of deportation turned into anger.
UTRGV Student Abraham Diaz stated, “I’m an undocumented immigrant. I’m a DACA recipient. I’m a student. This is what immigrant looks like. And yesterday Greg Abbott gave just one scenario of where an undocumented immigrant committed a crime. You cannot paint brush all undocumented immigrants with just one scenario.”
Others say undocumented victims will remain in the shadows and no longer be as willing to report crimes for fear of deportation. Crimes like rape and domestic violence.
Samantha Herrera with Fuerza Del Valle said, “Domestic violence is unfortunately a very real issue in our community. People are already afraid to document and demand justice for those kinds of cases. I can’t imagine what conversations are happening right now surrounding ‘should I call the police or not? Right? When I know the police are going to ask me for my papers.”
Now these non-profit organizations say they will fight until state lawmakers do away with SB 4.
Hidalgo County Sheriff Eddie Guerra has expressed his strong opposition to SB 4, saying he’s concerned that the new law would put a strain on the community’s relationship and trust in local law enforcement. He added that he’s afraid people will stop reporting crimes for fear of being deported.