Tell Congress: keep refugees safe

Hundreds of thousands of El Salvadoran refugees face deportation, and the situation is urgent. By Monday, the Department of Homeland Security must decide whether to extend or end Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for El Salvador. The Trump administration, predictably, wants to send them all back to an unstable country and often dangerous situations.

TPS was created by Congress in 1990 and allows people whose countries have experienced natural disasters, armed conflicts or exceptional situations to remain temporarily in the United States. Conditions on the ground for these folks can be bleak, and ending TPS has the potential to split up families.

This administration has already ended TPS protections for Haitian and Nicaraguan refugees. But the House has introduced the ASPIRE Act and the ESPERER Act to allow every TPS recipient to apply for permanent residency. We need to ask our leaders to sign onto these bills, to defend El Salvadorans and to shore up TPS to protect thousands more.


ONE THING YOU CAN DO RIGHT NOW


Call Congresswoman Pelosi and say, “I’m [NAME] calling from [ZIP CODE], and I’d like to ask the Congresswoman to fight for legislation such as the ASPIRE Act and the ESPERER Act that that extends protection for people from all ten countries under TPS, and that provides permanent relief for these refugees. TPS affects hundreds of thousands of people, whose lives will be ripped apart without our protection.”

Not comfortable making phone calls? Try Resistbot, and send an email to Congresswoman Pelosi in under 2 minutes!


UPCOMING EVENTS


Stand Up SF General Meeting
Sunday, January 21
2pm – 4pm
Noe Valley Public Library
451 Jersey Street
REGISTER NOW

What’s next?

Thursday, when it started to look like we were going to lose on the tax bill, I realized: I wasn’t discouraged. I was angry. And now that the Senate has passed the bill, I am trying to hold onto that anger. Anger is fuel. Anger motivates us to take action.

However you’re feeling today, last night’s vote was a big loss. It’s not quite over yet, but most likely, the House will pass this bill as-is. But consider this: it’s December, and this is the very first time Republicans might actually have a major legislative victory. Nearly a year has gone by without a big win: that’s a huge testament to your strength and resilience. THANK YOU.

Trump and the Republicans who work exclusively for the wealthy top 1% would love for us to get so discouraged by this loss that we give up the Resistance. But if the history of progressive action in this country has taught us anything, it’s that standing up the next day and getting back into the fight is the way we win.

So what’s next? What do we do with our anger and frustration? The Senate calendar isn’t slowing down, which means we can’t either. Congress will need to pass a spending bill to fund the government by December 8 — and we need EVERY DEMOCRAT IN CONGRESS to pledge to withhold their vote for any spending bill that doesn’t include the DREAM Act. Republicans are trying to avoid including it in the funding bill, so it’s up to Democrats to stand up for Dreamers.


ONE THING YOU CAN DO RIGHT NOW


Call all three MoCs and thank them for standing strong on taxes (positive reinforcement is important!). Then demand that they take the Dreamer Pledge. (script)

Not comfortable making phone calls? Try Resistbot, and send an email to all your representatives in under 2 minutes!


UPCOMING EVENTS


Brown Bag Lunch with Sen. Feinstein Staff
Monday, December 11th
12pm
Rooftop garden (weather permitting), Crocker Galleria
50 Post St
REGISTER NOW

We will not stop resisting

We were cautiously happy when we heard that Democratic leaders today struck a tentative deal with Trump to protect DACA recipients from deportation in exchange for increased spending on border security (but not a wall). We now wait for details, and are hoping to see a fast track to permanent citizenship for these young people.

A team from Stand Up SF met with Congresswoman Pelosi’s office this week. Here are the talking points we went in with, and the discussion that ensued. Many thanks to Kathleen who led the action for us, and to all the Stand Up SF volunteers who work behind the scenes to make these visits easy and productive, like our policy team and our Member of Congress trackers.

In other developments this week, the Justice Dept announced that none of the Baltimore officers involved in the death of Freddie Gray would face federal charges. This follows similar decisions in two other civil rights investigations this year where men died at the hands of police officers: Alton Sterling, a black man shot to death in Louisiana, and James Boyd, a mentally ill man shot to death in New Mexico. This is very disturbing, especially in light of Trump’s July remarks where he urged the police not to be “too nice” in transporting  suspects.

On the unfolding saga of Russia interfering with our elections, this week we learned that Russia used Facebook to organize anti-immigrant rallies on U.S. soil. This on top of using social media bots and fake accounts to spread fake news harmful to Clinton.

This week Congress also passed a bi-partisan resolution calling on Trump to condemn hate groups, in response to his “on many sides” shameful defense of white supremacists and neo-Nazis.

I will close with something Charles Blow said so well:

“We, patriots, will not stop resisting this destruction. It is we who will Make America Great Again by trying to limit the damage Trump can do to us.”

Stand Up SF actions:

  • The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) has given preliminary permission for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to begin routinely destroying 11 types of records, including those related to sexual assault by guards, substandard medical care, overuse of solitary confinement, threats and physical assault by custody staff, and even death while in custody. The proposal is open for public comment through Friday 9/15. Here is an easy way to submit a comment.
  • H.R. 2810 National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018 (NDAA) has passed the House and is up for a Senate vote soon. It authorizes $700B in war-mongering (base budget of $632B for the DoD and the national
    security programs of the DoE, $60B for Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO), $8B add’l requested for “other defense activities.”). We are concerned about dumping billions into defense while stripping critical programs from our citizens. Call both Senators about this (script).
  • And speaking of war, Trump has an itchy trigger finger and unrestricted power to launch nuclear weapons at will. S. 200 – Restricting First Use of Nuclear Weapons Act of 2017 would require a congressional declaration of war in order to use nuclear weapons, except in response to an incoming nuclear attack. Call and ask Senator Harris to cosponsor the bill (Sen Feinstein already has).

Troubled by the direction our country is taking? Come to our next monthly meeting and help steer and power our resistance!

Zombie TrumpCare rises again

It’s hard to believe, but Senate Republicans are trying to bring TrumpCare back from the dead again. Not much is known about the new bill (surprise, surprise) but we know it would once again destroy Medicaid. The GOP has only until September 30 to pass this toxic bill, and we know it’s going to be a tough fight, particularly as Senator John McCain has said he would support it. Get your dialing finger ready.

Trump is trying to torpedo the Affordable Care Act whether TrumpCare passes or not. His latest maneuver is to withdraw funding for the outreach necessary to promote the ACA and help Americans sign up — which especially affects the most vulnerable populations such as non-English speakers and those who don’t have Internet access. This is just the most recent attack on critical programs for Americans, and is sadly consistent with Trump’s budget priorities, which include cuts to Medicare, Medicaid, SNAP, education, and Pell grants.

DACA recipients are still reeling from last week’s horrible announcement, and now the House is expected to vote this Tuesday on a bill that criminalizes immigrants, including those fleeing gang violence, and allows more of them to be detained and deported. It also affects vulnerable populations such as asylum seekers, TPS holders, and unaccompanied children. This is the kind of legislation that makes it easier than ever for ICE to terrorize immigrants and encourages others to turn away rather than offering support and demanding justice.

Meanwhile, Hurricane Irma is pounding Florida and Betsy DeVos is trying to remove sexual assault protections on college campuses.

There are a lot of places to direct your passion right now. Stay focused on the issues that matter most to you, and don’t forget to take care of yourself.

——

Hopping mad about any of the above? Join us at Congresswoman Pelosi’s office this week to find out what she’s doing to make sure TrumpCare stays dead, and to protect Americans from Trump’s deadly budget cuts. If you can’t make it, submit your ideas for talking points to policy@standupsf.net.

——

Bring a friend to our next meeting! Come to hear guest speaker Rafael Mandelman, President of San Francisco City College’s Board, talk about the resistance movement and how it’s shaping our communities in the Bay Area.

Stand Up SF September Meeting
Sunday, September 17th
2pm – 4pm
REGISTER NOW

This week’s Stand Up SF actions

  • Kill TrumpCare and defend the ACA: Tell all three MoCs that you appreciate their efforts to defend the ACA and protect Americans’ health care. You can say “I want the [Congresswoman/Senator] to know that I appreciate her ongoing work to defend the ACA. I am counting on her to work against Graham-Cassidy, the latest version of TrumpCare, and want to know what she’s doing to offset Trump’s sabotage of the ACA, such as cutting funding for outreach.”
  • Defend DACA recipients: Tell all three MoCs that you want the Dream Act attached to every must-pass bill in Congress. (background and scripts)
  • Don’t let Congress criminalize immigrants: Call Congresswoman Pelosi and tell her to vote no on H.R. 3697, the Criminal Alien Gang Member Removal Act. You can say “Hi, my name is [NAME] and I’m a constituent in San Francisco. I am concerned that H.R. 3697 will make vulnerable immigrants who are trying to escape gang violence into ICE targets. Let’s not punish asylum seekers, unaccompanied children, and others who are especially vulnerable. Please vote no on H.R. 3697.”
  • Protect Americans from dangerous budget cuts: Call both Senators and tell them to oppose any budget any resolution that makes cuts to Medicaid, Medicare, or SNAP, and doesn’t offset tax cuts with new revenue or closing loopholes. (explainer and script)

Actions with other groups

  • Tue 9/12: Protect San Franciscans from police violence. At this meeting, the San Francisco Police Comission will consider a proposal by Chief Scott to arm SFPD with Tasers. Come out and voice your concerns.
  • Wed 9/13: Join Swing Left’s monthly meeting to prepare to canvass and register voters in the red district of San Joaquin County. RSVP.
  • Protect voting rights: Join the ACLU’s national voting rights campaign. Sign up to send text messages and help recruit for this vital effort.

Thanks for all you do.

Laura

Pre-meditated murder

Today the Senate approved $15 billion for victims of Harvey as part of a deal between Trump and congressional Democrats that will also raise the federal borrowing limit and keep the government open until Dec. 8. The House is expected to vote on it tomorrow. With Hurricane Irma barreling down on Florida, it is expected to pass. Republican leaders are fuming at the surprise move by Trump. They also were hoping to extend government funding for a longer period so they could avoid additional votes before mid-term elections.

While Trump’s move will offer relief to Harvey victims, he has taken many other steps that will increase the human suffering from future storms:

  • Just days before Harvey pummeled Texas and Louisiana, he signed away the requirement that future building must comply with the tougher flood standards set by President Obama. He did this despite the evidence that flood standards are outdated. Houston alone saw three “500-year” floods in the past three years.
  • He proposed devastating cuts to climate change research as well as huge subcuts to programs that collect data and model storms.
  • He directed the EPA to revisit (that is, loosen) vehicle efficiency standards, despite the fact that about a third of the global warming pollution created in the US comes from transportation. And doesn’t it just seem incredibly antiquated to defend gas guzzlers?
  • He ordered the evisceration of the Clean Power Plan, which was to cut carbon pollution by nearly a third from the dirty power plants that account for 40% of our nation’s carbon footprint.
  • He created a “red team” to challenge the conclusions reached by climate scientists across the globe over decades of research. The red-team approach makes sense in the military and in consumer companies, where you have to make assumptions about the opponent’s plans. But climate science is well understood, with massive consensus on the link between carbon dioxide and climate change. The link is as certain as the link between smoking and lung cancer. One science professor called the red team plan a “dumb
    idea” that’s like “a red team-blue team exercise about whether gravity exists.
  • He has assigned one of his former campaign managers to screen EPA grants for the words “climate change.” The EPA spends half of its ~$8B budget on grant awards.
  • Add to this list Trump’s better-known offenses like putting climate deniers in cabinet positions, expanding fossil fuel development and extracting the US from the Paris climate accord.

The Nation calls this fossil-fuel expansion and climate denial ‘pre-meditated murder.

Earlier this week Trump also rescinded Obama’s DACA policy that let undocumented kids who arrived in the US before they were 16 apply for two-year renewable amnesty. DACA recipients must have a spotless record to be eligible for the program, and about 9 out of 10 are working taxpayers. Trump gave Congress six months to come up with legislation before the plug is pulled on DACA. While this puts 800,000 young people in fear of being deported to a country they’ve never lived in, there is some hope. A recent NBC News poll shows that 64% of Americans support DACA, and 71% want to offer undocumented immigrants who are already working here a chance to  apply for legal status. So the public opinion tide is turning.

In addition, 700 business leaders from across the country signed an open letter calling on Congress to pass the bipartisan DREAM Act or similar legislation, including CEOs from Amazon, AT&T, eBay, Microsoft, Wells Fargo and many other household names. And in a separate letter, 1,800 community leaders including numerous governors, 130 mayors, 200 state legislators, and a host of faith, legal, community, and law enforcement leaders called on Congress to enact legislation that “replaces fear and uncertainty with permanent protection for Dreamers.”

Attorneys general from 15 states have filed a lawsuit against the administration over DACA. Our Attorney General, Xavier Becerra, plans to file a separate suit since about 1/4 of DACA recipients live in California.


If you live in San Francisco and want to change the course of this country, we invite you to join us.

Come to our Sept monthly meeting!
Sunday Sept 17th, 2-4pm
Noe Valley Library
451 Jersey St, San Francisco
Register now!


Stand Up SF actions:

  • We need more, not less, funding for programs that keep communities safe in the face of catastrophes like Hurricane Harvey. Call all 3 MoCs and say ““My name is ___ and I am a constituent. I am calling to ask the Senator, as she gets ready to vote on a spending package, to please vote “no” to any bill that would cut the funding for agencies and programs that help communities prepare for and respond to disasters—including funding for FEMA, NOAA, NASA, and the EPA.”
  • Trump just nominated anti-science climate denier Jim Bridenstine to run NASA. Bridenstine is not a scientist, and he has an ugly history of anti-science rants. On the House floor in 2013, he demanded President Obama apologize for spending NASA money on studying climate change. NASA’s earth sciences division is at the forefront of climate change research, and its satellites provide critical data on weather events like hurricanes. Call Senators Harris and Feinstein and oppose Bridenstine. “My name is ___ and I am a constituent. I am calling to tell the Senator that NASA needs to be run by someone who respects science, not someone who rejects science. Please oppose Jim Bridenstine as head of NASA. He is a climate denier.”
  • One of the most effective tools for winning the fight for DACA youth is to gather personal stories. if you have a personal story about how DACA has helped you or someone you know, share it with Senator Harris, who is
    a champion of immigrants, here on her special form.

Actions with other groups: