Gwinnett County Early Voting continues this week through FRIDAY!

March 11, 2019

GALEO has been at work at the Georgia Capitol and in Gwinnett County!
Please see below on important calls to action for support of immigrant rights and other issues that are important to GALEO and our Latinx community!  Please pay special attention to the action alert regarding the need to call your State Senator on the Hate Crimes Legislation.
GALEO does strongly support the MARTA Referendum for expansion into Gwinnett County.    Gwinnett County voters have cast their ballots for several weeks in this important election to bring and expanded public transit option for Gwinnett County residents.  This week is the LAST week of early voting before the election on March 19th!
GALEO volunteers and canvassers will continue to make sure Latinx community members will turn out to vote YES in support of the Gwinnett County referendum on MARTA expansion.
Please see below for additional information and ways in which you can help us reach more voters!
Please join our advocacy efforts by joining our texting campaign.  Please stay engaged and respond to important actions by texting the word IMMIGRATION to the short code number 864-237.  This will add you to our texting program to ensure we speak up at needed times.
Please consider the GALEO Latino Community Development Fund as you prioritize your end of the year donations.  Please follow the link here:
Thank you for your support!

Jerry Gonzalez
Executive Director
Legislative Update post Cross-Over Day
By Harvey Soto, GALEO Policy Analyst (

HB426-Hate Crimes Legislation:  GALEO had been following and supporting efforts to pass state Hate Crimes legislation for some years now with the #HateFreeGA Coalition.  Finally, we had a victory!  The House of Representatives passed HB426 late on Thursday night.  For the first time in state’s history, the legislation included protections for sexual orientation. Georgia is one of only FIVE states that does not have Hate Crime law. This is a great opportunity to pass this important piece of legislation in the State Senate before Sine Die (last legislative day) and then be signed into law. GALEO will need your support and phone calls to make sure we have a victory in the upcoming weeks.  See call to action below to contact your State Senators.

HB 316-Voting Legislation:  The omnibus voting bill aimed to change much of our voting machines, systems, and procedures. The bill will change our DRE voting machines to an electronic ballot marking system with a paper audit. GALEO was following this bill because of our concern with the exact-match provisions of the bill that would have negatively impacted the Latino community and newly naturalized citizens, among other minority groups. Through our efforts with a coalition of voting rights groups we were able to get most of the exact-match issues addressed in the bill.  Now, the process should allow for more time of notification to the voters if their registration is on a pending status. The bill passed the house earlier this week and was introduced into the Senate Ethics committee.
HB 202- Immigrant Inmate Registry:  This bill was introduced and supported by the anti-immigrant lobby whose desire was to paint a false narrative of the criminality of immigrants in our state. The bill would require the Department of Corrections to make an aggregate report every 90 days on the immigration status, crimes, and national origin, of all its inmates.  GALEO and other immigration rights advocates testified in committee meetings against the bill stating it was misleading in its intent, and fed into the hateful rhetoric against our community. The bill stalled in the Rules Committee and is dead for this legislative year, but it can be reintroduced in 2020 so we will keep a careful eye on it.  It may also be attached to other legislation so we will be watchful for the rest of the session.
HB400- Scarlet Letter for Driver’s Licenses: HB 400 would change the format and presentation of Georgia Driver’s Licenses to say “NON U.S citizen” on the face of the license issued to a non-citizen driver, and would also say “not for federal use.”  GALEO was following this bill closely.  Thankfully, the legislative initiative stalled in the Motor Vehicles Committee. Scarlet Letter Driver’s License legislation initiatives like this one have been introduced every year and GALEO will keep monitoring them.
HB564-Gerrymandering Legislation:  On Tuesday, GALEO staff got wind of a bill that was redrawing two legislative districts in Gwinnett County and the initiative was signed by two house members, one from each party. Upon further review with our voting rights partners and data mapping/analysis, we concluded that the legislators were attempting to redraw lines to protect their re-election.  GALEO opposes any partisan or racial gerrymandering, and we were glad to hear that the bill sponsors had pulled their support from the bill AFTER our coalition of voting rights groups started drawing negative attention to it. Thankfully, GALEO and other partners have a solution to gerrymandering with the following legislative initiative to prevent future schemes like the one mentioned here.
SB52-Democracy Act:  SB52 and support for it is lead by our allies at the ACLU of Georgia.  GALEO supports the end to partisan and racial gerrymandering and this legislation helps address this.  This bill would establish a nonpartisan, independent commission that would redraw our state’s Senate and House legislative districts. This would be a great step towards making sure our representation is fair and that we choose our elected officials, not the other way around.
ACTION ALERT:  URGE YOUR State Senator to VOTE YES on the Hate Crimes Bill in Georgia!
Urge Your State SENATOR to Pass a Hate Crimes Bill in Georgia (HB426)
HB 426, sponsored by State Representatives Chuck Efstration, Calvin Smyre and Karen Bennett, has passed out of the House during cross over day and is ready to be heard the Senate. Now is the time to activate your networks and get everyone to contact their State Senators to urge them to vote YES on HB 426.
This is a penalty-enhancement hate crime bill that would provide increased penalties for crimes committed based on bias or prejudice against someone because of their race, color, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, mental or physical disability.
Formed by ADL, Hate Free Georgia is the leading the advocacy on HB426. A FAQ  is available that provides more information on this legislation.
Urgent: Your State SENATOR needs to hear from you right now.
The State House of Representatives vote in favor of HB 426 which would add hate crime legislation to the books in Georgia. NOW, the SENATE must vote on this bill before the end of the legislative session, so rush your urgent message to your State SENATORnow and urge them to support this bill.
Let’s all work together to get this bill passed!
Your message:
As your constituent, I’m emailing to ask for your support of HB 426 which deals with enhanced sentencing for hate crimes. This bill is awaiting Senate action and I urge you to encourage your colleagues to vote YES on this bill.
HB 426 would protect people of all faiths, including Christianity, as well as race, color, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, mental disability, or physical disability from being the target of biased based crimes on those bases.
The bill does not apply to speech and can only be applied in cases where crimes are committed. Nothing in the bill aims to limit the speech of clergy or anyone else.
Please support HB 426.
GALEO encourages voters in Gwinnett County to VOTE YES on the MARTA Referendum scheduled for March 19th!
Early Voting continues through Friday, March 15th!
GALEO strongly supports a YES Vote for expansion of MARTA into Gwinnett County.
GALEO has been working diligently in the last several weeks on voter education on the fact that there was an election happening on March 19th, but now will transition from voter education to a full support effort of a YES vote in favor of the MARTA referendum.
ProGeorgia has organized phone banking sessions to reach out to voters in Gwinnett County.  Lots of options for volunteering are here.  Please sign up and sign up as a GALEO volunteer.
If you need additional information on the MARTA Referendum, you may visit our websites here:
To check your current voter registration status and to vote by absentee or on election day (March 19th), please visit this link:
Preguntas o problemas?  Llamenos a 1-888-54GALEO (1-888-544-2536).
If you are bilingual and would like to help with our canvassing efforts as a paid canvasser or as a volunteer if you have less time to commit, then please contact
Gwinnett County MARTA Referendum VOTE!
Su VOTO Es Su Voz!

Election is March 19th!

Gwinnett County Voters go VOTE!


Gwinnett County Elections Office (455 Grayson Highway, Lawrenceville, GA 30046).

Early voting will be every day from Feb. 25 – March 15, including Saturdays and Sundays from 7:00a.m. – 7:00p.m. each day.

The following satellite locations will also be open from 7:00a.m. – 7:00p.m. from March 4-15:

    • Bogan Park Community Recreation Center, 2723 North Bogan Road, Buford, GA 30518
    • Dacula Park Activity Building, 2735 Old Auburn Road, Dacula, GA 30019
    • George Pierce Park Community Recreation Center, 55 Buford Highway, Suwanee, GA 30024
    • Lenora Park Activity Room, 4515 Lenora Church Road, Snellville, GA 30078
    • Lucky Shoals Park Community Recreation Center, 4651 Britt Road, Norcross, GA 30093
    • Mountain Park Activity Building, 1063 Rockbridge Road, Stone Mountain, GA 30087
    • Shorty Howell Park Community Recreation Center, 2750 Pleasant Hill Road, Duluth, GA 30096

Questions or problems?  Call us at 1-888-54GALEO (1-888-544-2536).

Free Citizenship Clinic!  Spread the word!

Need Assistance Applying for Citizenship? CPACS is hosting a FREE Citizenship Clinic on Sunday, March 31 from 10 am – 3 pm. To apply, you must be at least 18 years old and a legal permanent resident for 5 years or 3 years if married to a U.S. citizen. Registration is required. Register at

If you need help getting to the event, transportation is available. Call 770-936-0969 for more information. 

What to Bring: 
– Green Card and Social Security Card 
– Your address and job history for the last 5 years
– List of ALL trips taken outside of the U.S. for the last 5 years 
– Family information for ALL children and spouses (current & former) 
– If you have ever been arrested, certificates of disposition for all arrest.
-To apply for a fee waiver, bring 2017 Taxes

Thank you to our event partners: Angkor Resource CenterCatholic Charities AtlantaSnackboxe Bistro, and GAWL – Georgia Association for Women Lawyers

If you are interested in volunteering, please sign up at
Join GALEO & other groups for Immigrant Rights Thursdays at the Georgia Capitol!
Join us on Thursdays during the Legislative Session for an opportunity to defend Immigrant Rights at the Capitol. Each year, the Georgia General Assembly introduces harmful anti-immigrant legislation aimed at our communities. We need your help to show up and remind legislators that we are here to fight back against bills that vilify or hurt our people.

Come out at 9 am on Thursdays to room 132* in the Capitol where you’ll get a brief training on how to talk to your legislators, as well as information about bills or issues that are being worked on. From there, you’ll have a chance to talk to your representatives. We hope to have you out by 11am!

No need to sign up or RSVP, just show up! Please be sure to bring a photo ID to get into the Capitol.

Check out our events on our page.
Join us for other events!
March 16th:  GALEO Leadership Series in Columbus.
March 29th:  12th Annual Cesar Chavez Day Celebration at the Georgia Capitol.
March 31st:  FREE Citizenship Clinic
April 2:  Sine Die-Last Day of the GA Legislature!
ACLU GA:  Join Us to create a MORE Representative Democracy!
Abraham Lincoln spoke of a government “of the people, by the people, for the people.” But here in Georgia, our government is of the legislators, by the legislators and for the legislators. Under our current system the legislators get to choose their own districts – and their own voters.
But that isn’t how it should be. Together, we can change that.
The Democracy Act, SR 52 & HR 369, changes the current redistricting process in Georgia. No longer will politicians be able to meet in secret to manipulate the boundaries of their own districts to their own benefit.
The Democracy Act would mandate transparency in the process. It would create a process that is citizen-driven, and it would create a citizens’ commission that is nonpartisan.
We need you to take action today to help pass the Democracy Act in Georgia. Here’s how you can help:


All it takes from you is one call. Call your legislators today and demand that they become sponsors of this critical piece of legislation.

Click here to join the action.

As we near the 2020 elections, the Democracy Act only becomes more important. We must take the power to draw maps away from legislators, who have proven time and again they cannot be trusted with the power.
Put the power back into your own hands. Support the Democracy Act and demand the same from your leaders.
AMERICA’S VOICE  ACTION ALERT to BLOCK President Trumps Fake National Emergency!
Last week, by a 245-182 bi-partisan margin, the House just voted for a resolution that would end Donald Trump’s national emergency.
Senator Rand Paul also indicated over the weekend that he would vote against President Trump’s “national emergency.” Info here.
Now it’s the Senate’s turn. Sometime in the next 18 days, the Senate must take a vote on this resolution as well. If enough Senators vote YES, Trump’s national emergency will be over. Call your Senators today at (202) 224-3121.
Contact our Georgia U.S. Senators directly here:
U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson:  202.224.3643
U.S. Senator David Perdue:  202.224.3521
Let’s recap: two weeks ago, Donald Trump declared a national emergency in a temper-tantrum-effort to get his border wall even though polls show that the majority of Americans don’t want it.
The House of Representatives, in the vote they took just now, said Trump’s move to declare a national emergency is not ok. Now, the Senate must pass the same resolution.
But here’s the thing: Trump can veto this resolution. So, we need AS MANY SENATORS AS POSSIBLE to vote YES on the resolution rejecting Trump’s national emergency. That’s the only way we might avoid a veto.
When you call your Senators today at (202) 224-3121 (or at the numbers above), here are a few things you can say:
  • “Trump’s border wall is unnecessary, costly, and unpopular. We cannot let Trump get away with declaring a fake national emergency in order to build it. Vote YES on the resolution to reject Trump’s national emergency.”
  • “This is a fake national emergency and an unconstitutional power grab. There are so many other actual issues our country needs to tackle. Please reject Trump’s national emergency declaration so that we can get to work on issues like immigration reform, climate change, health care, and the economy.”
  • “Trump’s national emergency is unconstitutional and sets a terrible precedent. The president cannot just go around Congress and steal money from other projects just to fulfill a campaign promise to build a border wall.”
After you call, please fill out our form and let us know how your call went. It’s important that we log each and every call to Congress.
We cannot let Trump’s national emergency prevail. Please call now!
Care about Expanding Access to Affordable Healthcare?
Almost half a million Georgians can gain access to affordable health care with your help. State lawmakers are discussing ways to expand health insurance to 473,000 Georgians, and they need to hear from you. Send a short email to your state lawmakers today about why health coverage matters
Hall County should have bilingual access in English and Spanish for all elections material!
GALEO and other community members have launched a petition addressed to Hall County Commissioners and the Hall County Elections Board.  Please spread the word!

#HallEspanol #GALatinoVote

Check out our Job Opportunities section on our website!
Are you looking for a new career or job opportunity?  Know someone who is looking for a job?  Also, some volunteer positions will be posted here from time to time.  Please check this link weekly!
GALEO is also seeking an part-time canvassers!  Please email for details.

SAVE the DATE for
GALEO’s 16th Annual Power Breakfast!
Save the date!  16th Annual GALEO Power Breakfast
Date:  Friday, June 7th, 2019
Time:  8:30 AM – 11:00 AM
More information will be posted online:
Join GALEO & become an active member of our network!
Your membership to GALEO supports our work and also allows for you to become part of the GALEO Leadership Council!

GALEO membership is open to anyone who supports our efforts and mission.  Please consider becoming a member to help support our efforts in civic engagement and leadership development of the Latino community in Georgia.  Through your membership, YOU make a difference and add your voice to ours!  Together, we are STRONGER!
Become part of our GALEO Familia by becoming a MEMBER of GALEO.  Once you are a member, you may join our GALEO Leadership Council to engage in the many activities we have going on to promote civic engagement and leadership development of the Latino community.

GALEO Membership:

Join the GALEO Familia today!