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LULAC and Civil Rights Partners Win Preliminary Injunction to Temporarily Block SB 4 from Going Into Effect on Sept. 1st

August 30, 2017

San Antonio, Texas – This evening, a Texas court ruled in favor of a preliminary injunction filed by the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) to stop Senate Bill 4 (SB 4) from going into effect on September 1, 2017. SB 4 outlaws “sanctuary cities” by requiring local law enforcement to cooperate with federal immigration authorities to detain or turn over undocumented immigrants, as well as authorizes local officials to inquire about a person’s immigration status.

LULAC filed the first lawsuit against SB 4 less than 24 hours after Gov. Greg Abbott (R) signed it into law. In the case styled The City of El Cenizo, Texas, v. State of Texas, the Plaintiffs are, the City of El Cenizo, the City’s Mayor, Raul Reyes, Maverick County and elected officials Sheriff Tom Schmerber and Constable Mario Hernandez and Texas LULAC and its thousands of members throughout Texas. Defendants include the State of Texas, Governor Greg Abbott (In His Official Capacity), and Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (In His Official Capacity).

In response, LULAC National President Roger C. Rocha Jr. issued the following statement:

“Today’s verdict is not just a victory for El Cenizo and the state of Texas; it’s a win for the country. The ruling protects the civil liberties of immigrant communities across the U.S. that live in fear of discrimination due to the color of their skin, accent, and native country. We prevailed in blocking state lawmakers from rolling back decades of progress our nation has made on civil rights. Defeat was never an option. The precedent set today serves as a clear and direct message to other states that might consider passing anti-immigrant laws: Discrimination and attacks on our country’s most vulnerable people will not be tolerated and will be met with relentless resistance.

Local Texas law enforcement officials will no longer be tasked with doing the job of a federal agency. They can focus their time and resources maintaining public safety and building on the trust they have established with the communities they serve. Immigrants can resume reporting crimes without the fear of deportation, a community policing practice that has historically contributed to low crime rates.

We extend our deepest gratitude to all who have contributed to the success of our fight against Texas Senate Bill 4. Your time, dedication and relentless pursuit for justice helped uphold the U.S. Constitution and protect the rights of millions who call America their home.”

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The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) is the nation’s largest and oldest civil rights volunteer-based organization that empowers Hispanic Americans and builds strong Latino communities. Headquartered in Washington, DC, with 1,000 councils around the United States and Puerto Rico, LULAC’s programs, services and advocacy address the most important issues for Latinos, meeting critical needs of today and the future. For more information, visit www.LULAC.org.

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