Marqueece Harris-Dawson for LA’s 8th District

Los Angeles – The CHIRLA Action Fund would like to announce its endorsement of Marqueece Harris-Dawson for Los Angeles City Council District 8. Elections for City Council will take place on Tuesday, March 3, 2015.

As a champion for education, equity, safety and immigrant rights, Marqueece represents a new generation of leaders in South Los Angeles. At the core of his experience is a belief in social justice for all the communities that reside in the 8th Council District.

Marqueece has been recognized with numerous community commendations, recognitions and awards including the coveted Do Something “BRICK” Award, The Wellness Foundation Sabbatical Award, the NAACP Man of Valor Award, Durfee Foundation’s Stanton Fellowship and Liberty Hill Foundation’s Upton Sinclair Award.

Veterans’ advocates hit the Hill

A group advocating the rights of veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan are on the Hill this week to press lawmakers on issues ranging from disability care to high rates of unemployment.

Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, the largest organization for veterans of the wars, will host a series of events as a part of their Storm the Hill campaign this week, culminating in Thursday’s release of their legislative agenda for 2010.

Top priorities include improving the claims processing system for disabled veterans, addressing the suicide epidemic among service members and improving the Veterans Affairs Department’s health care services for women.

This is the fifth annual trip for the group, which was founded in 2004. Starting Monday, the veterans will form teams named for the military alphabet — Alpha, Bravo, Charlie, etc. — and will meet with more than 100 lawmakers to discuss their issues.

The veterans were originally scheduled to meet with Rep. John Murtha (D-Pa.), a Marine veteran of the Vietnam War, who died Monday.

CHIRLA Action Fund Endorses Jacque Robinson for Mayor of Pasadena

Los Angeles – The CHIRLA Action Fund, one of the strongest advocates for immigrant rights in California, announced Tuesday it is endorsing Jacque Robinson for Mayor of the City of Pasadena.

With her experience and dedication, Jacque Robinson represents the diversity and future of Pasadena.  She is the only woman candidate in a field of six. Elections are March 10, 2015.

The following are statements from Angelica Salas, CHIRLA Action Fund Board Chair.

“We are delighted to endorse a fighter for underrepresented communities and a champion for all residents of Pasadena.  Robinson has the charisma, expertise, and drive to bring our community together and represent us well.

On several issues that have impacted immigrants, including comprehensive immigration reform and Proposition 47, Ms. Robinson has demonstrated she understands our community and that’s why we support her efforts to lead Pasadena as the next Mayor.”

The CHIRLA Action Fund first endorsed Ms. Robinson in 2007 when she first ran for the Pasadena City Council.  Ms. Robinson is a first generation American of Belizean roots.

CHIRLA Action Fund Fall Membership Drive

The CHIRLA Action Fund has demonstrated that we will stand up for the Family Uniters that have taken leadership on behalf of immigrants, and we will vote out the Family Dividers, those that have not stood by our families. We will vote out the extremists who have chosen gridlock and racism over families and common sense.  But we cannot do this alone, we need your support.

We have made historic gains for immigrant rights across the country – we won DACA, we won reform in the Senate, and we’ve won countless victories to advance the rights for immigrants here in California.

Every election cycle, we get one step closer to immigration reform. We only got this far precisely because we mobilized and voted.

We can continue to amplify your voice as a CHIRLA Action Fund member.  Together we can stand as workers, students, supporters, advocates and individuals making a difference in the lives of immigrants every day. Take the next step with us by becoming a CHIRLA Action Fund member for the cost of $25 a year.  With your support there is no limit to what we can accomplish.


Vote Yes on Prop 47!

Californians have an historic opportunity to bring about needed and long-overdue criminal justice reform by voting Yes on Proposition 47.

This measure would:

  • Improve public safety;
  • Reduce prison spending; and
  • Increase our investment in K-12 schools, victims’ services and mental health and drug treatment.

Prop. 47, the Safe Neighborhood and Schools Act, will be on the ballot this November. It would change the lowest-level, nonviolent crimes such as simple drug possession and petty theft from felonies to misdemeanors. The savings would go toward preventing crime.

If it passes, California will lead the nation in ending felony sentencing for the lowest level, non-violent crimes, permanently reduce incarceration and shift $1 billion in the next five years alone from the state corrections department to K-12 school programs and mental health and drug treatment.

This reform maintains the current law for anyone with prior convictions for rape, murder or child molestation.

At the same time, Prop. 47 reduces the barriers that many people with a low-level, non-violent felony conviction face to becoming stable and productive citizens, such as a lack of employment, housing and access to assistance programs and professional trades.

Yes on Prop. 47 is supported by law enforcement leaders, crime victims, teachers, rehabilitation experts, business leaders, faith-based leaders and immigrant rights organizations, as well as the CHIRLA Action Fund.

This reform will focus our law enforcement resources on violent and serious crime, and use the savings in prison spending to prevent crime.

CHIRLA Action Fund Gets the Vote Out in the Antelope Valley

Palmdale, CA – CHIRLA Action Fund volunteers will be turning out voters today in the Antelope Valley for this year’s Primary Election.  A significant gain in immigrant and Latino voters is expected in this year’s primary election as the “Respeto” campaign launched by the CHIRLA Action Fund has reached record numbers of low propensity voters.

“Since April, CHIRLA Action Fund volunteers have knocked on doors, made phone calls and reached out to 5,000 Latino and immigrant voters in the Antelope Valley.  On Election Day, we are reminding voters to get out to vote and have their voices heard loud and clear.  Our collective vote will put a stamp of approval on efforts to move immigration reform once and for all in Congress,” stated Angelica Salas, CHIRLA Fund Board Chair.

This historic effort is helping to motivate immigrant and Latino voters to send a clear message that when these communities are invited to participate in the democratic process, they show up in great numbers.

“It is important to get out the vote because we need positive change,” said CHIRLA Action Fund volunteer Alicia Garcia who just finished knocking countless doors, “We expect compassion and support for our community from our elected officials.  Our community is tired of the inaction, the deportations and family separation. It is in the hands of our elected officials to make the difference and voting is one step forward to getting true representation and find champions who fight for our community.”

Two major races are on this year’s ballot with high stakes for immigrant families.  The first is an open seat for Congressional District 25.  The most outspoken advocate in favor of immigration reform has been Dr. Lee Rogers.  The race to win the L.A. County Sheriff seat is also expected to be a close race with Sheriff James Hellmold as the only progressive candidate in the running.

Later tonight, CHIRLA Action Fund volunteers will be celebrating the election results at a viewing party for community members and their families.  They have put in countless hours over the course of these past two months and look forward to seeing their hard work pay off.


/ In News / By admin / Comments Off on CHIRLA Action Fund Gets the Vote Out in the Antelope Valley

CHIRLA Action Fund Endorses Lee Rogers, Begins Voter Outreach

Palmdale, CA – On Saturday, May 10, over 30 CHIRLA Action Fund volunteer canvassers gathered together at Poncitlan Square to celebrate Mother’s Day weekend by reaching out to voters and informing them of the upcoming primary election on June 3.  As part of the “Respeto” Campaign, which translated means Respect, the CHIRLA Action Fund kicked off a voter engagement effort that will reach thousands of low propensity immigrant voters in the Antelope Valley.

I’m a mother with a beautiful immigrant family here in Palmdale and we are active here in the community working to pass immigration reform,” said Josefina de la Cruz, “We have only seen promises from our elected officials.  We want immigration reform, we want results.”


Candidate Lee Rogers received an official endorsement from the CHIRLA Action Fund at Saturday’s event.

“We deserve candidates that respect our immigrant community and give us the attention that we deserve,” said Angelica Salas Board Chair of the CHIRLA Action Fund, “It is with great pride and pleasure that we endorse candidate Lee Rogers for Congress.”

Candidate Lee Rogers addressed the audience and encouraged the Latino community in the Antelope Valley to have their voices heard in the upcoming election.

“The House could be standing up for immigrant communities, instead they have voted to repeal your health care 50 times,” said Lee Rogers, “We know that mother’s are being taken away from their children, we know that businesses will be better when we accept immigrants into our community.”

At the conclusion of the endorsement, volunteer canvassers got their maps and walking lists and headed out into the neighborhoods in Palmdale to encourage the community to get out and vote in the upcoming election.  Within hours they knocked on 550 doors.  They plan to continue knocking on doors every weekend until the June 3 primary election.

/ In News / By admin / Comments Off on CHIRLA Action Fund Endorses Lee Rogers, Begins Voter Outreach

CHIRLA Action Fund Prepares for Primary Election

Lancaster, CA – On Saturday, March 29, 2014, community leaders gathered together for a movement building training to develop their skills and share their personal stories in preparation for the upcoming election.  As the primary draws near, these community leaders will be phone banking and knocking on doors to ensure the immigrant community in Lancaster and Palmdale will be adequately represented at the ballot box.

Over the course of the next two months, the CHIRLA Action Fund will train hundreds of immigrant leaders to educate low propensity voters on exercising their right to vote during the primary election.  The shift in pro-immigrant policies at the state level have resulted because of a strong immigrant vote that grows exponentially year after year.  Whether it is Driver Licenses or the TRUST Act, immigrant voters are shaping the future of California where everyone can achieve their true potential.

The training will consist of door-to-door canvassing, phone banking strategies and education on the importance of the 2014 primary election.  In 2010, a mere 2,120 Latino voters in Palmdale voted in the Primary Election.  In Lancaster, the number of Latino voters was 806 who reached the polls in the Primary Election.  With hard work and dedication, we can triple the turnout on June 3, 2014. The CHIRLA Action Fund believes that when our immigrant communities vote, the issues that impact their lives will truly be addressed in changes in policy.