During this pandemic, the illusions of a society and democracy that assign equal protections and rights to us all have fallen away, revealing many hard truths. Something that has become glaringly obvious is that we need better leaders—more #PeopleLikeUs—in office who hold other policymakers accountable and stay focused on building an inclusive democracy that represents and protects all people.
Once again, for this edition of the Resistance Roundup, we’re shining the light on the elected officials who are stepping up to lead and keep our communities safe and healthy.
Here’s what a few of our alumni and other #PeopleLikeUs in office have done recently:
Boston City Councilors Michelle Wu and Julia Mejia are calling for additional transparency and equity in city relief funds. Councilor Wu also co-sponsored a resolution in support of Congresswoman Grace Meng’s resolution to condemn the anti-Asian hate and racism resulting from COVID-19.
Colorado State Senator and NAL trainer Julie Gonzales signed onto a letter urging Governor Jared Polis to expand protections and resources for individuals facing homelessness to ensure they can socially distance.
Montgomery County Councilmember Will Jawando proposed a rent freeze that would ban any rent increases until 30 days after the state of emergency in Maryland expires.
Philadelphia City Councilmember Helen Gym, one of our 2018 New American Hero Awards honorees, introduced legislation to prevent evictions even after the pandemic, given concerns about its lasting economic impacts.
Detroit City Councilmember Raquel Castañeda-López, U.S. Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib, and Michigan State Senator Stephanie Chang are hosting a Facebook Live event on May 1 to talk about the 2020 Census, completion rates, and what you can do to ensure we’re all counted, even in the midst of a pandemic.
Hanan Yahya, Detroit City Councilmember Castañeda-López’s community and policy coordinator and a NALpista, is crossing Detroit responding to questions about the Census. She’s “part of a generation of young Arab Americans reaching out to their communities to get counted for the U.S. Census.”
NALpistas Arizona State Representatives Raquel Terán and Athena Salman, Phoenix City Councilmember Carlos Garcia, and Cynthia Aragon helped launched a relief fund for the undocumented community in Arizona.
The Squad is pressing House leadership to provide a clear timeline for a vote on a more ambitious “Phase 4” relief package to address the pandemic.
U.S. Representative Veronica Escobar and U.S. Senator Kamala Harris are demanding the safe release of nearly 2,400 detained immigrant children.
The Congressional Hispanic Caucus and more than 100 House leaders are urging Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to pass H.R. 6, the American Dream and Promise Act of 2019, to protect Dreamers from deportation.
U.S. Representatives Joaquin Castro, Judy Chu, Deb Haaland, and Karen Bass are calling for emergency funding for diverse local media outlets, which are struggling to stay afloat financially during the pandemic. “Considering COVID-19’s disproportionate impact on our communities, it is paramount that our constituencies receive rapid and factual news from the culturally relevant sources they trust.”
ICYMI: Late Monday, Trump announced his plan to sign an executive order suspending all immigration to the United States. Our Founder and President Sayu Bhojwani had this to say:
“Immigrants are on the frontlines fighting the coronavirus pandemic and keeping our nation going during the crisis. They make up about one quarter of our doctors, a third of our restaurant workers, and two thirds of our agricultural workers, according to data from New American Economy. But none of this matters to Trump, who is using this global pandemic to further his white nationalist agenda.
Trump’s racism and hate are spreading as quickly as coronavirus and are just as deadly to our nation’s identity and vibrant New American communities. As a movement driven by immigrants, New Americans, and people of color, we condemn Trump and his heinous ban. We’re united in our efforts to vote him and all who support his cruelty out of office.”
Read our full statement on Trump’s immigration announcement here. Sayu also spoke with Brian Lehrer on WNYC on Wednesday about Trump’s plan; you can listen to the full clip here.
Remember: Although we are physically distant, we are stronger together and always just a call, message, or post away. We’re in this together.
Stay healthy and safe!
The NAL Team
P.S. We’ve teamed up with Vote Run Lead for a new Kitchen Cabinet meeting on how generations of inequity are playing out during the pandemic.
Tune in this Saturday at 11 a.m. EST to ask questions on how to address these inequities and learn from NALpistas Irene Godinez, Eva Masadiego, Detroit City Councilmember Raquel Castañeda-López, Arizona State Representative Raquel Terán, Colorado State Senator Julie Gonzales, Pakou Hang, and other badass women fighting for our communities. Register for free today!