Non-profit

Proyecto Azteca

Proyecto Azteca provides housing to low-income residents in Hildalgo County, Texas, including illegal immigrants. [1] [2] The United Farm Workers of America (UFW) labor organization helped to found Proyecto Azteca in 1991. Left-of-center positions the organization has staked out include defunding Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)[3] and supporting a path to citizenship for all illegal immigrants. [4]

Rio Grande Valley Equal Voice Network

Proyecto Azteca is a founding member of the Rio Grande Valley Equal Voice Network (RGV-EVN) alongside the American Civil Liberties Union of Texas. [5] [6]

The group formed following town halls in the Rio Grande Valley during the 2008 election. Similar town halls held in twelve states resulted in the Equal Voice Convention sponsored by the left-of-center grantmaking organization Marguerite Casey Foundation. The convention resulted in six working groups being formed to focus on left-of-center policy proposals. The immigration working group advocates for the DREAM Act which would give some illegal immigrants a path to citizenship and supports allowing unauthorized residents to obtain drivers licenses. [7]

RGV-EVN backed a “A New Border Vision” as part of its opposition to the Trump administration policy regarding illegal immigrants. [8] The plan calls for ending “zero tolerance” for those found to be unlawfully in the United States, limiting methods used to detect people illegally crossing the border, and ending the detention of those caught crossing the border. [9]

RGV-EVN called the Trump administration’s request of $25 billion to secure the southern border “a shakedown” and specifically opposed funding the wall and deportation. [10] After the death of Jakelin Ameí Rosmery Caal, who was in U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) custody at the time of her death, RGV-EVN called for not funding the Department of Homeland Security until an investigation was complete. [11]

In June 2019, RGV-EVN joined other Equal Voice Network affiliates in Washington, D.C. for a protest calling for defunding Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and CBP. [12] Protesters also demanded the end of information sharing between the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and ICE which helps ICE to identify illegal immigrants living in the United States. [13]

Advocacy Positions

The left-of-center magazine American Prospect published an article discussing United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) contracts with HHS and Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) to provide services to trafficking victims and undocumented unaccompanied children. [14]

The article criticized HHS allowing USCCB to be exempt from providing information about contraceptives and abortion services. The ACLU sued over the contracts and Michael Seifert, the network coordinator for RGV-EVN, also spoke out against the exemptions. Ann Williams Cass, the executive director of Proyecto Azteca, called the Catholic bishops the “far right wing” because they did not want to help people get access to contraceptives and abortions. [15]

In 2010, Congressman Henry Cuellar (D-TX), at the time chairman of the House Homeland Security Subcommittee, came out in favor of using drone surveillance along the border. [16] Proyecto Azteca’s Cass opposed the idea saying that Congress should pass immigration reform that includes more paths for non-citizens to work in the United States, rather than increasing security measures. [17]

In 2013, the city of McAllen was considering allowing a privately operated prison to be built to alleviate an inmate transport backlog. [18] Proyecto Azteca came out against the plan primarily because many of the inmates the prison would hold would be illegal immigrants “serving six-month sentences for crossing the border without inspection.” [19]

References

  1. “Our History.” Proyecto Azteca. Accessed June 24, 2019. http://proyectoazteca.wixsite.com/proyectoazteca/our-history. ^
  2. McGreal, Chris. “America’s Poorest Border Town: No Immigration Papers, No American Dream.” The Guardian. November 19, 2015. Accessed June 25, 2019. https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2015/nov/19/americas-poorest-border-town-no-immigration-papers-no-american-dream. ^
  3. RGV Equal Voice. Twitter Post. June 25, 2019, 10:02 AM. Accessed June 25, 2019. https://twitter.com/EqualVoice_RGV/status/1143565224039133186 ^
  4. “Immigrant Advocates Applaud Major Step Toward Comprehensive Immigration Reform.” LUPE. April 29, 2013. Accessed June 25, 2019. https://lupenet.org/2013/04/immigrant-advocates-applaud-major-step-toward-comprehensive-immigration-reform/. ^
  5. “Rio Grande Equal Voice Network.” Proyecto Azteca. Accessed June 24, 2019. http://proyectoazteca.wixsite.com/proyectoazteca/rio-grande-equal-voice-network. ^
  6. “Network Partners.” RGV Equal Voice Network. Accessed June 25, 2019. https://www.rgvequalvoice.com/network-partners. ^
  7. “Working Groups: Immigrants Rights.” RGV Equal Voice Network. Accessed June 24, 2019. https://www.rgvequalvoice.com/immigrantsrights. ^
  8. “We Should Not Fall into Complacency.” RGV Equal Voice Network. May 23, 2019. Accessed June 24, 2019. https://www.rgvequalvoice.com/pressreleases1/2019/5/23/we-should-not-fall-into-complacency. ^
  9. “A New Border Vision.” SBCC. May 2019. Accessed June 24, 2019. http://d3n8a8pro7vhmx.cloudfront.net/themes/5c8a803c4764e89849b5753e/attachments/original/1557787799/SBCC-NBV-H.pdf?1557787799. ^
  10. “End the Shutdown Without a Shakedown.” RGV Equal Voice Network. January 24, 2019. Accessed June 24, 2019. https://www.rgvequalvoice.com/pressreleases1/2019/1/24/end-the-shutdown-without-a-shakedown. ^
  11. “”We Are Being Traumatized Every Day, but This Really Breaks My Heart “.” RGV Equal Voice Network. December 17, 2018. Accessed June 24, 2019. https://www.rgvequalvoice.com/pressreleases1/2019/1/24/we-are-being-traumatized-every-day-but-this-really-breaks-my-heart-. ^
  12. RGV Equal Voice. Twitter Post. June 25, 2019, 10:02 AM. Accessed June 25, 2019. https://twitter.com/EqualVoice_RGV/status/1143565224039133186 ^
  13. RGV Equal Voice. Twitter Post. June 25, 2019, 10:02 AM. Accessed June 25, 2019. https://twitter.com/EqualVoice_RGV/status/1143565224039133186 ^
  14. Posner, Sarah. “Blurred Lines at the Border.” The American Prospect. October 14, 2013. Accessed June 24, 2019. https://prospect.org/article/blurred-lines-border. ^
  15. Posner, Sarah. “Blurred Lines at the Border.” The American Prospect. October 14, 2013. Accessed June 24, 2019. https://prospect.org/article/blurred-lines-border. ^
  16. Flores, Erika. “Unmanned Drones Over the Border.” KGBT. February 23, 2010. Accessed June 25, 2019. https://valleycentral.com/news/local/unmanned-drones-over-the-border. ^
  17. Flores, Erika. “Unmanned Drones Over the Border.” KGBT. February 23, 2010. Accessed June 25, 2019. https://valleycentral.com/news/local/unmanned-drones-over-the-border. ^
  18. Michaelson, John. “Critics: McAllen’s Plan for Private Jail “Economically Wrong”.” Public News Service. September 11, 2013. Accessed June 25, 2019. https://www.publicnewsservice.org/2013-09-11/criminal-justice/critics-mcallens-plan-for-private-jail-economically-wrong/a34439-1. ^
  19. Michaelson, John. “Critics: McAllen’s Plan for Private Jail “Economically Wrong”.” Public News Service. September 11, 2013. Accessed June 25, 2019. https://www.publicnewsservice.org/2013-09-11/criminal-justice/critics-mcallens-plan-for-private-jail-economically-wrong/a34439-1. ^

Associated Organizations

  1. ACLU of Texas (Non-profit)
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