SOMOS GEORGIA is a growing movement of Georgians committed to immigrant, racial and economic justice.

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Actions and Upcoming Events

GA MASS RESISTANCE TO HB-87!!!

Coming in Support of the GA Mass Mobilization is not Breaking the Boycott!! Come to JOIN the Resistance & Mass Action / Not to Vacation!

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FRI, JULY 1st! DAY OF NON-COMPLIANCE w/ HB87! (NO work / NO shopping) Day Without Immigrants & Allies!

SAT, JULY 2nd @ 10:00AM! DAY OF MASS RESISTANCE TO HB87! Thousands will march in support of the immigrant community. Join in resistance to HB87 & ALL racist, xenophobic & anti-immigrant laws.

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Sign on as a BuySpot or Sanctuary Zone

Join the growing number of businesses, organizations and places of worship that support communities directly engaged in resistance to racist laws in Georgia.

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Boycott Georgia

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Somos Georgia / We are Georgia, in partnership with Southerners on New Ground (SONG) and the National Day Laborers Organizing Network (NDLON), has officially called for an international Travel, Tourism, and Convention Boycott of the state of Georgia due to the state’s passage of Arizona copycat legislation HB 87. We ask you to consider the deep damage that HB 87 is doing to our most vulnerable communities, and we ask you to honor this boycott. Economic boycotts places PEOPLE ABOVE PROFIT.

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  • GA LGBTQ Communities and Allies Renew Call for Resistance

    Contact:
    Roberto Tijerina – 865.335.8982
    Kathrin Ivanovic – 215.776.1162
    Paulina Hernandez – 919.323.2057

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    July 2, 2011

    GA LGBTQ Communities and Allies Join the Call to Action for July 2 March as Resistance to Anti-Immigrant HB-87 Intensifies

    Opponents call on Obama and Governor Deal to Repeal Controversial Legislation

    (media version)

    Following a preliminary injunction on controversial HB-87 bill that seeks to drive immigrants of our Georgia, many Georgians are condemning it as an affront to the economic vitality, civil rights legacy, and moral conscience of the state.  Amongst those outcries is that of in the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBTQ) communities and their allies.

    Members of GA’s LGBTQ communities maintain that the legislation will divide families and communities, will severely damage the economy, and will likely place further scrutiny and targeting against people within sexual minority communities and other vulnerable communities. They believe that this legislation is inhumane and demonstrates the urgent need for national comprehensive immigration reform and join the urgent call for the Mass March for Justice After the Day Without Immigrants in Georgia on July 2, pressing the need for action and resistance against HB-87.

    After a state-wide ‘Day without Immigrants’ on July 1 where people refused to go to work or shop and businesses shut their doors, thousands will march at Georgia’s capitol in a circuit that passes detention centers and Immigration and Customs Enforcement offices to demonstrate against HB 87 and call for a Georgia that honors its immigrant population.

    Below are statements of community leaders and community organizations representing concerned Georgians:

    Paulina Hernandez, Co-Director, Southerners on New Ground:

    Today we march to demonstrate our organized resistance as affected communities and those in solidarity in the Fight to Repeal HB-87.  Matt Ramsey and other racist legislator who seek to gain political advantage by encouraging hatred and bigotry will hear from the thousands of families who will not rest until his social and political experiment against our people is defeated.    Governor Deal has wasted enough of our tax dollars trying to defend an unconstitutional law.  If he chooses to appeal the federal court’s decision, he will be wasting even more of our tax dollars on a useless appeal of an unconstitutional law.  It is also time for the Obama administration to terminate its 287(g) agreements with Gwinnett, Cobb, Hall, and Whitfield counties.  Judge Thrash found that the main reason Georgia passed HB87 is to scare off immigrants.  Driving away “foreigners” is the same reason Georgia sheriffs have asked for – and gotten – 287(g) agreements.  Recognizing this, the Obama administration should immediately terminate its 287(g) agreements with Georgia counties.   Today we march and are here because we will not comply with unjust, racist laws that seek to fragment our communities.  The LGBTQ community has a lot to risk with the passage of HB-87 and we are outraged that the Governor has chosen to ignore all the community outcry from citizens, legal residents and immigrant communities alike, his arrogance will mark a political moment we will not forget.

    The thousands of people in Georgia who have opposed codifying and legislating hate will not rest until the Governor is accountable to the fact his party has forced its political agenda at our expense, and at the expense of poor and working class immigrant people, and gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender immigrants all over Georgia, who will suffer for it. We are calling for a National Boycott of conventions and vacation travel to Georgia, to tell the Governor that racism, racial profiling and hate are not values we will are willing to underwrite and pay for.  We want to send Governor Deal a strong message that he must veto HB-87, and that will not tolerate a Governor who leads Georgia into the troubled waters of a state like Arizona.

    Paris Hatcher, Executive Director, SPARK! Reproductive Justice NOW

    SPARK Reproductive Justice NOW stands in solidarity with SONG and other people of color and LGBTQ led organizations in the South for the July 2nd Mass Mobilization.  We share and echo the call for renewed commitment for justice for immigrants and other marginalized communities who are facing increased surveillance and profiling with the passage of HB87. As a community centered organization led by the experiences of women of color and LGBTQ people, we understand a temporary injunction is not enough, and only a full repeal of HB87 can mitigate the devastating impact of this racist bill on the lives, families, and communities of our people. The July 2nd Mass Mobilization reminds us of the continued and shared struggle of our many communities working towards racial justice, gender and sexuality liberation, self determination, and our right to family. SPARK asks our members and allies to answer the call on July 2nd and join SONG and partner organizations to stand in solidarity and be in the number for this important day.

    Mary Anne Adams, Board Member & Founder, ZAMI NOBLA (National Organization of Black Lesbians on Aging)

    ZAMI NOBLA is calling for Solidarity and Action today, July 2nd, and stand with GLAHR, SONG, and others in the Fight to Repeal HB-87.  This bill uses racial profiling as a tool of Georgia to police, detain, arrest and deport Latino immigrants. Moreover, it places ALL people of color in the cross-hairs of Police and ICE collaboration.   As a Black Lesbian organization we are concerned that our base, our communities and our allies will be affected with its passing and implementation. We urge our comrades to build unity across communities that experience homophobia, sexism and racism, and show up to join the Mass Mobilization today. We urge everyone to let Gov. Deal know that the people of GA will not rest until HB-87 is repealed!

    We have been disheartened that Gov. Deal has moved forward in the signing of HB-87, which is such a flawed and unconstitutional piece of legislation. This bill uses racial profiling as a tool of Georgia to police, detain, arrest and deport Latino immigrants. Moreover, it places ALL people of color in the cross-hairs of Police and ICE collaboration.  As a Black Lesbian organization we are concerned that our base, our communities and our allies will be affected with its passing and implementation.

    Craig Washington, Executive Director, AIDS Atlanta

    Like the Slave Codes of the antebellum era, the Black Codes of the Reconstruction period, and the Jim Crow laws which remained intact through the mid 1960′s, HB-87 is not about law and order, it is about control and exploitation, and it is racist to its wicked core. Like its predecessors, it is an insidious bill, unjust and unjustifiable in its design to deny immigrants and people of color their basic human rights and freedom of movement.

    As a black gay man who has been HIV+ for most of my life, I embody identities deemed as taboo, different, queer, those whose bodies are demonized, criminalized and imprisoned. I do not need to face the same pitfalls as an immigrant to recognize where our paths cross. I do not have to be hit by the same bullet to see we are both targets in the bulls-eye. Whether or not I see myself as affected by such injustice, I must rise against it, as a person of faith, as a man “who believes in freedom (and) will not rest until it comes.” Today let us raise up together in opposition to this hateful bill. Today we unleash our voices, we rise in chorus! Let our chants resound to claim freedom for all, to celebrate the contributions of immigrants throughout GA and the nation, to declare that we share the struggle, and that only when we are all free, can we proclaim the victory.

    Stephanie Guilloud and Emery Wright, Co-Directors, Project South

    “The anti-immigrant bills passed in Georgia, Alabama, and South Carolina signal a new shape of a crisis that emerges from an old history of racism in the South,” says Project South Co-director Emery Wright.  A new generation of brave people are taking up the charge of the Southern legacy to unite our communities for comprehensive and complete freedom. “These battles are connected, and we are stronger together,” says Stephanie Guilloud, Project South co-director. “Whether young mothers are demanding access to higher education or immigrant youth are demanding entrance into schools, we all deserve to meet our highest human potential.” Today, Project South marches with families who have been targeted and profiled by racist legislation whether it’s Islamaphobia, the constant police presence in Black communities, or the intimidation and fear tactics used against immigrants. We call on teachers, medical practitioners, faith leaders, students, and community leaders to choose freedom and decide not to comply with these laws.

    Statements also available in Spanish, German, Persian and Korean.

  • We Are Georgia Campaign renews it’s call for Mass Mobilization on July 2nd!

    Put on your marching shoes, we hit the streets this Saturday. The politicians who passed HB87 are trying to drive us deeper into the shadows and further underground.   We will not comply!  We are coming out, standing up, and getting loud!

     

    We converge on the Capitol Saturday, July 2 for the largest mass mobilization the South has seen in years.  The rally and march start at 10:00. Wear white and be ready for a big, energized crowd.

    We march on Saturday because when WE STAND UP AND FIGHT BACK, WE WIN!!  This week:

    • Six undocumented youths showed us all what it is to be brave.  Dulce Guerrero, Jessica Vasquez, Rolando Zenteno, Nataly Ibarra, Felipe Baeza, and Leeidy Solis come out publicly as undocumented inside the Georgia State Capitol, a few feet away from the chambers where legislators voted to pass HB87.  Led by the Georgia Undocumented Youth Alliance and joined by hundreds, the youths then went toe to toe with police and were arrested, risking deportation.  All six have been released.
    • A federal judge issued a preliminary injunction on key provisions of HB87.  Judge Thrash blocked the parts of the law that tried to turn local cops into immigration officers, and that made it a crime to transport, harbor, or induce an undocumented immigrant.   This is a huge defeat for Governor Deal and Rep. Matt Ramsey, the bill’s sponsor.  They were told in no uncertain terms that HB87 is unconstitutional, but they insisted on passing it anyway.  The judge’s ruling makes it clear that Governor Deal and Rep. Ramsey are dead wrong.
    • Dozens of supporters from around the country have arrived in Georgia to kick off Human Rights Summer, based at the Georgia Latino Alliance for Human Rights.  People are being trained in the skills we need to win this fight in the long run.

    Spanish Flyer – July 1 NonCompliance / July 2 Mass Mobilization

    The fight against HB87 is a fight against the criminalization of our people. It is a fight for our right to remain here in the place we call home.   When we march on Saturday, we are saying:

    • It’s time for the Obama administration to terminate its 287(g) agreements with Gwinnett, Cobb, Hall, and Whitfield counties.  Judge Thrash found that the main reason Georgia passed HB87 is to scare off immigrants.  Driving away “foreigners” is the same reason Georgia sheriffs have asked for – and gotten – 287(g) agreements.  Recognizing this, the Obama administration should immediately terminate its 287(g) agreements with Georgia counties.
    • Governor Deal has wasted enough of our tax dollars trying to defend an unconstitutional law.  If he chooses to appeal the federal court’s decision, he will be wasting even more of our tax dollars on a useless appeal of an unconstitutional law.
    • We will continue challenging the parts of HB87 that survived the preliminary injunction, particularly the requirement that certain private employers use E-Verify (employment verification).  The mandatory use of this flawed database – something that was never intended to be imposed on small businesses – affects the safety & livelihood of our communities
    • It’s time for the Obama administration to put a stop to S-Comm, the controversial data sharing program that links immigration enforcement with local law enforcement.  The police and prisons across the U.S. – but in the South and in Georgia in particular – are the very definition of institutional racism.  The Obama administration should be working to reduce the racism within the criminal justice system, not make it worse by empowering it to go after immigrants.
    • And most of all, it’s time for us to rev up our campaign for a FULL REPEAL of HB87!!!

    There is a long fight ahead of us – come out on Saturday to get loud and get energized!  You want to be a part of this. See you at the Capitol!

  • Court Held at 9:00 am for Arrested Undocumented Youth

    For Immediate Release

    Contact: Georgina Perez at 678-389-1226

    ginalpm@gmail.com

     

    Court Held at 9:00 am for Arrested Undocumented Youth

    Three minors released to care of their parents; adults await hearing to learn their fate

    Atlanta, Georgia— Yesterday, June 28th, six undocumented youth were arrested at the Georgia State Capitol in an act of civil disobedience.  The youth were there protesting the passage of laws like HB87 but more importantly they were there to tell their fellow undocumented youth that they should no longer be afraid.  “We are doing this because we want other undocumented youth to realize they need to be unafraid.  Unafraid of the politicians, of the police of anyone who tells them they deserve fewer rights than anyone else.  We will no longer remain in the shadows.” Nataly Ibarra, 16.

     

    Three of those arrested, Nataly, Rolando and Leeidy, were released to the care of their parents, however the remaining three, Dulce, Jessica and Felipe, are currently at Fulton Jail and will see a judge at 9:00 am.

    Who: Dulce, Felipe and Jessica, undocumented youth arrested at Georgia State Capitol

    What:   Court Hearing for three remaining students in jail

    When/where:  9:00 am – Wednesday June 29th | 901 Rice Street, Atlanta, Georgia

    Supporters will be meeting at the courthouse to show their support for the three and let them know that they represent the dreams of so many others.  “I am ready to fight even harder knowing that they were willing to take such a big risk at such a young age.  Youth in Georgia are tired of waiting, tired of hiding; if anyone wants to know what will happen next they just need to open up a history book.” Georgina Perez, organizer with the Georgia Undocumented Youth Alliance.

    ###

    Georgia Undocumented Youth Alliance (GUYA) is an Undocumented Youth-led organization which seeks dignity and justice for its immigrant youth community in the state of Georgia. GUYA believes all persons should have equal access to education and a life free from persecution regardless of their legal status.