Fact Sheet: Texas SB4’s Impact on LGBT & Asian Communities

What is Texas Senate Bill 4?

On May 4, Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed into law SB4, one of the nation’s most rigorous anti-immigrant laws passed since Donald Trump took office. It bans “sanctuary cities” where immigrants are protected in that local police officers are limited in asking for or disclosing someone’s immigration status.

The Texas bill would enable local police to ask about someone’s immigration status when they are initially detained — even if they have not yet been charged with a crime. Those who do not comply with the law could be fined up to $25,500 per day and face misdemeanor charges.

The bill is scheduled to go into effect on September 1, 2017.

What has the response been so far?

Just one day after Texas’ governor signed the bill into law, city and county officials in Texas filed a lawsuit against both the Governor and State Attorney General Ken Paxton. Since then, the four largest cities in Texas – Houston, San Antonio, Dallas, and Austin – have joined the lawsuit, along with other organizations throughout Texas. Supporters of the lawsuit argue that the bill would violate the Constitution by impeding free speech and equal protection. Several local and national civil rights groups, labor unions and legal experts have condemned the law.

How would Texas Senate Bill 4 affect LGBTQ and API communities?

Immigrants’ rights and LGBTQ rights are deeply intertwined.

Asian Americans are the fastest-growing racial minority group in the country. Asian Americans are also the largest segment of both legal and undocumented immigrants coming to the U.S. One million Asian Americans are undocumented. In Texas, 44% of the state’s population is Latino, Asian American, or Arab American. Texas SB 4 would equally subject both Latino and Asian Americans to illegal profiling regarding immigration status.

There is an estimated 263,000 LGBTQ API immigrants, of which nearly 40,000 are undocumented. Studies have found the LGBT undocumented immigrant population to be disproportionately Asian.

Texas SB 4 would subject LGBT people who are ethnic and racial minorities to discriminatory stops and unlimited questioning about their immigration status by local law enforcement.

Moreover, LGBT people have also been historically harassed by local law enforcement.  Not too long ago, same-sex sexual relations were illegal and police often raided gay bars.  We must take a stand against Texas Senate Bill 4, because no one should be singled out and discriminated against merely for looking Latino, gay, Asian, queer, Muslim, or trans.

What you can do?

First, read up on the details and an analysis of the bill here and know your rights under the bill, which are clearly explained here.

Second, help your LGBTQ and API family take a stand against the bill by writing a letter to city mayors, council members, and other local officials in Texas localities that have not yet joined the lawsuit challenging the bill. For instance, Fort Worth City Council has not yet voted on the matter.

Third, join the fight. NQAPIA works with several LGBTQ API community groups in Texas, including Coalition of Houston Asian Americans (CHAA), Khush-ATX in Austin, and Dragonflies in Dallas who are standing up for our community.

Read this in Chinese (NQAPIA Fact Sheet Texas SB4 Chinese), Urdu (NQAPIA Fact Sheet Texas SB4 Urdu), and Vietnamese (NQAPIA Fact Sheet Texas SB4 Vietnamese).

Action Alert: Don’t Repeal our Healthcare!

Don’t Repeal our Healthcare!

We need to continue fighting the attack on our communities from Trump’s administration. Republicans in both the house and the senate have been scheming to take away our access to affordable healthcare, and we can’t let them leave our communities in the dark! At the beginning of May, the House passed a Trumpcare bill that strips coverage from 23 million Americans. We must stop the Senate from doing the same.

TAKE ACTION: Call your Senator

Stop the Senate from passing any kind of “Trumpcare” by finding and calling your senator or dialing 866-426-2631!

Use this message:

“Hello, my name is ________. I am a constituent of Senator ____________, and I am calling to ask them to vote against repealing and replacing the Affordable Care Act with the American Health Care Act. I want to relay a clear message that it’s critical that the provisions and benefits of the Affordable Care Act remain in place. Since its passage, 20 million Americans have gained health care coverage and receive a record low uninsured rate.”

Talk about how it affects AAPI communities:

“Over two million AAPI people could lose health insurance coverage under the repeal bill—and many more women of color and low-income women could lose access to preventive health and reproductive health services.”

Talk about how it affects the LGBTQ community: (Click the image on the right to expand it in a new window.)

“In states without non-discrimination policies, the Affordable Care Act is our non-discrimination protection. That means LGBT couples can enroll for insurance without fear of exclusion. On top of that, people can’t be denied coverage due to pre-existing conditions, like HIV or even cancer.”

Combine statistics with a personal story:

“I have personally benefited from the Affordable Care Act by (no longer having a lifetime or annual cap on coverage, having access to free contraception, getting coverage even with my pre-existing condition, receiving no-cost prevenative services as a transgender person, etc.)”

Our AAPI LGBT community needs access to healthcare, and we can’t afford to fight discriminatory barriers. Let’s flood the Senate phone lines with our concerns and show them how much our community cares for one another. Our power and resilience shows we are stronger together.

NQAPIA thanks our allies at NAPAWF for their help in developing this Action Alert.

#NQAPIA #ResistTrump

10 ways Obamacare improved LGBT access to health insurance

Legal Eagles

National API HIV/AIDS Awareness Day

HIV stigma hurts individuals and our API community. Saving face can’t make you safe when Asians have statistically significant growth of HIV infection (5% increase from 2010-2014)! We need to empower each other to build healthier communities.

Saving face can't make you safe. Talk about HIV. Get PrEP.

Do You Know if You Have HIV?

66.5% of Asian Americans and 43.1% of Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islanders have never been tested for HIV. We’ve got the lowest HIV testing rates of all races and ethnicities! With low testing rates, that means an estimated 1 in 5 APIs living with HIV don’t even know it.

What is HIV/AIDS?

Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is a life-long virus that attacks cells of your body’s immune system. Over time, HIV reduces your body’s ability to fight off infections and diseases. If left untreated, HIV can lead to acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). AIDS is a deadly stage of infection where your body is too weak to fight disease.

How do you Protect Yourself?

HIV is spread through direct contact of certain body fluids from someone who has HIV. When spread through blood, semen, pre-seminal fluid, rectal fluids, vaginal fluids, and breast milk, HIV is mainly spread through sexual activities and needle/syringe use.

  • Choose less risky sexual behavior
  • Use condoms consistently and correctly
  • Reduce your number of sexual partners
  • Use HIV medication, like PrEP, to reduce your risk
  • Get tested and treated for other STIs
  • Encourage HIV+ people to get tested and stay on HIV treatment
  • Educate yourself about HIV risk & how to reduce it

Take the Quiz: Are you a Stigmatizer?

Nearly 2/3 of Asians have never been tested for HIVSaving face can’t make you safe! Learn how to encourage healthy conversations and behaviors with nine multiple choice questions and video resources. Take the quiz now.

Did you know? APIs were significantly more likely to begin PrEP after referred to regimen by a clinic as opposed to a self-referral. Reduce the stigma and spread awareness today!

Find More Resources

Learn about HIV/AIDS through the Bayan Tree Project.

Learn more about PrEP at AIDS.gov.

#NQAPIA   www.bayantreeproject.org   #SavingFaceCantMakeYouSafe

Tell Cyberbullies: #LaterHaters

In the last 20 years, bullying—using greater strength or power to enforce one’s will on another—has moved from the playground to the Internet. Instead of physical strength and power, “cyberbullying” employs anonymity and emotional abuse to intimidate and threaten.

This pernicious and growing problem can occur over any form of electronic communications and via a variety of platforms. Computers, cell phones, gaming consoles, Twitter, Facebook—all can be used by children to terrorize and coerce peers and classmates.

With 34% of middle schoolers reporting they have experienced cyberbullying, it is essential that students, parents, teachers, and law enforcement have the tools needed to keep kids safe from bullying online.

LGBTQ a Focus of Cyberbullying

Those who are “different” are often the target of cyberbullying. This is especially the case for the LGBTQ community—and even more especially for LGBTQ individuals of color. Nearly half (49%) of LGBTQ students have experienced cyberbullying, and 55% of LGBTQ students do not feel safe at school because of their sexual orientation.

The mixture of racism and homophobia—and other biases—is particularly toxic. Like LGBTQ individuals of all non-white races and ethnicities, Asian American, South Asian, Southeast Asian, and Pacific Islander (AAPI) students can and are targeted more often for cyberbullying not only because of their sexual identity, but also because of their racial and ethnic heritage.

Especially now, when hate and vigilantism are so pervasive—both online and off—LGBTQ AAPI youth need to be able to effectively manage and protect their digital identities and have strategies at their fingertips to effectively counteract cyberbullying.

Personal Information Management Tools

A good place to start are phone and Internet provider personal information management apps, such as AT&T’s Digital You, which helps Web denizens of all ages protect their privacy and stay safe online.

Created in partnership with Common Sense Media, Digital You provides tutorials and resources on everything from reputation management, oversharing, and digital parenting to senior safety, privacy and security, and cyberbullying. Parents, caregivers, kids, and teachers can all use these resources to lessen the impact of cyberbullying.

Another way to use technology to fight against cyberbullying is engaging with the #laterhaters campaign, which not only provides tools and advice on how to deal with cyberbullying, but also gives victims a community to back them up.

LGBTQ AAPI Youth—Get Help When You Need It

Are you an LGBTQ AAPI youth who has experienced cyberbullying because of your race, sexuality, and/or your gender identity? If so, we encourage you to use the tools and information linked to above to help fight back, stay safe online, and involve a trusted grown-up when necessary. You don’t have to go through this alone.

If you have questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact us at any time.

Join NQAPIA’s Direct Action Trainings for People of Color

Direct Action Trainings Flyer (click to read details)

As we gear up for a Trump presidency, we have thought about how to get our people as trained as possible for what lies ahead. After talking with many of you, we’re planning a direct action organizing training series!

The goal is to get as many people of color (POC) trained to engage in direct action strategically, effectively, and as safely as possible. We also want to build relationships across our communities, since we’ll need each other now more than ever. This training series is lead and planned by queer and trans API people in collaboration with the Ruckus Society and a number of POC organizations. This training is open to all POC.

Direct Action Training Series

Los Angeles, CA – Sunday, 2/19
Washington, DC – Saturday, 2/25
New York, NY – Sunday, 2/26
Boston, MA – Saturday, 3/4
Philadelphia, PA – Sunday, 3/5
Bay Area – Saturday, 3/18
Seattle, WA – Sunday, 3/19
Chicago, IL – Saturday, 4/1

All trainings are from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Please plan to attend for the entire time. Lunch will be provided.
Sign up at bit.ly/datrainings.
We will follow up with the exact location of the training via email.