Texas State Representative Victoria Neave and dozens of other supporters are nearing the end of a four-day fast in protest of an anti-immigrant bill scheduled for debate in the Texas legislature this Wednesday that would ban all jurisdictions in the state from enacting pro-immigrant, sanctuary city policies. It would also allow law enforcement agencies to ask anyone about their immigration status.
Other Texans have joined Neave's fast in protest of the bill, she said.
Her mother was born and raised in Dallas, and her father has since become a legal USA citizen. She has heard anxious and fearful concerns from the families in her district.
'What else can I do to defeat this bill?' she said of her hunger strike. "The last alternative I thought I could turn to was prayer".
Meanwhile, a federal judge in San Francisco stopped President Donald Trump from withholding money from sanctuary cities.
The fear is one that Neave understands intimately, as her father came to the U.S. as an undocumented immigrant.
'This bill will undermine community policing efforts and will affect our neighbors, our workforce, kids in our schools, and the relationship between police and our communities, ' organizers wrote on a Facebook page promoting the fast. "We need to uphold immigration laws of our country and keep our communities safe", said State Sen.
More than 1,200 immigrant families recently packed into a recent informational session held locally, Neave said.
"I've had teachers come to my office and say their students are afraid of what's going to happen to them if their parents are deported", she added.
"I could see the fear in their eyes", Neave said.
Many believe this could lead to a decrease in reports of violent crime, and even a drop in economic activity.
A miracle would do it, but a hunger strike?