Current Campaigns and Victories

PUEBLO Leaders Win Local Support for TRUST Act!

For over a year, PUEBLO leaders have tirelessly advocated for the passage of the TRUST Act (AB 1081), a bill that would limit the harm the program Secure Communities has on immigrant communities through allowing state and county jails only to honor immigration detainers lodged against inmates convicted of a felony classified as “serious” or “violent” under California law opposed to low-level or non-criminal offenders. As a result, immigrants arrested for traffic violations or misdemeanor offenses would be far less likely to end up in deportation  proceedings.

As a member of  statewide effort to win support for this bill, PUEBLO along with the California Immigrant Policy Center to pushed to win a yes vote from our 35th District Assemblymember Das Williams. For nearly year PUEBLO leaders could not secure a yes vote from Assemblymember Das Williams who abstained to vote on earlier versions of the bill, however after coordinating several legislative visits and pulling together a coalition of allies to create more pressure, the Assemblymember voted  yes on August 24th and even went as far as giving a speech in support. The TRUST Act passed through the state assembly on August 24th with 48 yes votes, 26 noes and 6 abstentions!

The TRUST Act is now on Governor’s Brown desk awaiting signature! We are one step away from saving our state from the damage Secure Communities bring onto our communities.

Together we can make California the “antiArizona”!


  PUEBLO Leads  Successful March:

Chief of Police Dan Macagni is OUT!

Just two weeks after PUEBLO, Palabra anc concerned community members organized a successful march attended by over 300 people, demanding for a reform of the Santa Maria Police Department, and yet another two tragic fatal police shootings in addition to the three police shootings that sparked the march, Santa Maria Police Chief Dan Macagni is no longer in power!
The recent wave of police shootings in Santa Maria began in December of 2011 and reached a boiling point after June 28th, after a third life was taken within just 6 months. PUEBLO Leaders along with Palabra and family members of Jose Luis Ortega, the 22-year old man shot and killed by Santa Maria Police on June 28th organized a march to say “enough is enough!”. Over 300 people marched to City Hall on July 18th voicing their concerns about the police shootings and demanding for the reform of the Santa Maria Police Department, starting with the firing of then Santa Maria Police Chief Macagni.
Just two weeks after the march, there was yet another fatal police shooting of 71-year old vet, Jose Naveja on Monday July 30th. On Wednesday August 1st, Santa Maria City Manager Rick Haydon place Chief Macagni on administrative leave. Following yet one more fatal police shooting on the Thursday night, Chief Macagni made his retirement official on Friday, August 3rd.
Chief Macagni had been an obstacle for PUEBLO leaders for several years. Since before 2006, police officers have complained about the racist derogatory language Chief Macagni used. Also PUEBLO leaders relentlessly fought to change Santa Maria City Checkpoint Policies, with no cooperation whatsoever from the former chief.
We celebrate this community victory and will stay alert in ensuring community input in the hire of the next police chief

PUEBLO Youth Committee wins SMAT Bus Route Changes for Working Neighborhoods!

In October of last year PUEBLO’s Youth Committee leaders collected over 300 signatures demanding the return of a bus route to Western Ave., a street that runs through a working class neighborhood in West Santa Maria. The youth had a long journey, after collecting the signatures through going door to door and also collecting outside of church services in the affected neighborhood they needed to turn the signatures in at Santa Maria’s Public Works Department. The youth leaders coordinated a press conference and expressed their concerns.
As a result SMAT (Santa Maria Area Transit) held two public meetings to get feedback before adjusting bus routes. PUEBLO leaders also heard from community members from Tanglewood, a rural community about ten minutes outside of Santa Maria who had been left for 7 consecutive hours a day without bus services.
Now nearly a year after the courageous youth took a stand for their neighborhood, PUEBLO leaders enjoyed their first ride on the new bus routes that were changed thanks to their hard work. SMAT bus service has been returned to Western Ave. and Tanglewood now has routes constantly throughout the day.
Great job PUEBLO Youth!

PUEBLO and Friends of Fesler Fight to Keep Metal Scrapyard out of Low-Income Neighborhood!

PUEBLO's Housing Committee has partnered with a new community group called Friends of Fesler to fight off the placement of a hazardous metal scrapyard in the middle of a low-income Latino neighborhood and at one of the most dangerous intersections in town. After hosting a successful press conference, the Housing Committee mobilized its members and partners in environmental organizations to oppose the project in City hearings.

After the Committee organized a march to City Hall, and provided dozens of testimonies at 2 public hearings on March 21st the City Planning Commission voted to remove the project from the agenda until further notice. Since then thanks to the hard work of PUEBLO leaders the company withdrew their application and plan to pursue the project on the outskirts of the city!

City will consider further studies before deciding on recycling facility

Residents rally against recycler:

Local Residents Protest Proposed Recycling Yard:

Hearing on proposed recyling center postponed as crowd gathers:

By operator’s request, Planning Commission continues hearing to March 21:




Rental Housing Roundtable wins Tenants Displacement Assistance Ordinance!

    • December 7, 2010, The Rental Housing Roundtable (RHR), a coalition of 30 organizations including PUEBLO, and
      landlords, collected over 1,500 individual endorsements and worked tirelessly for two years to ensure broad support of the amendments.
      The amendments expanded the rights of renters in Santa Barbara
      The vote came as the community commemorated the second anniversary of the
      Modoc evictions of 2008. This eviction displaced 36 low-income families and
      disrupted the school year for over 90 children in the middle of the holiday season.

      The amended Ordinance 4444 will provide relocation assistance to tenants
      evicted due to renovations, rezoning, code violations and demolitions. By
      approving this ordinance, the Board of Supervisors took a step toward creating a
      more fair and just Santa Barbara County.
  • PUEBLO's Housing Committee partnered with CRLA to conduct know-your-rights workshops and launch a large-scale Renters' Needs Assessment. Starting in September, the Promotores collected over 200 surveys from renters, asking questions about housing quality, tenant-landlord relationships, and compliance with basic tenants’ rights. CRLA has put together a report of these results, and the Promotores will base their 2012 action plan on the results. Last October the group achieved their first victory. After providing testimonies to the City of Santa Maria's Traffic Committee, they won traffic calming measures at dangerous curves in their neighborhoods. On December 13th, they also organized a successful Tenant’s Rights Workshop attended by 150 renters.

The Committee for Improved Community Services bring the Mexican Consulate back to Santa Maria!

  • PUEBLO’s Santa Maria Immigration Committee for Improved Community Services (CICS), a coalition of over 15 organizations and agencies which succeeded in restoring Mexican Consular services to the City of Santa Maria in October, following a threatening letter from the Mayor threatening to send ICE and the Santa Maria Police Department if the Consulate came to the City. CICS saw that working to address the issue through the City would not prove successful and decided to meet with Consul Rogelio Flores of the Mexican Consulate of Oxnard. Despite his concerns about the City’s response and backlash from a rather intimidating chapter of the Minuteman in Santa Maria, upon seeing the size and determination of the committee, Consul Flores took a brave step and told the committee, “Give me a location and a date, and I’ll be here”.The Mexican Consulate of Oxnard worked with the CICS to resume Mobile Consulate mobile consulate services to Santa Maria on October 22nd.  In a well-coordinated event with 60-plus volunteers participating, over 300 people received services that day without interference by anti-immigrant groups or police! This issue has become a strong catalyst as it made the lack of Latino civic engagement in a 70% Latino city painfully obvious.  The Committee for Improved Community Services now has a powerful victory to inspire fellow Latinos to become more engaged in electing city leaders that will stand with the community rather than deny its basic rights.  Recently the Immigration Committee has launched a vote by mail conversion campaign among low-propensity and Latino voters to improve turnout. 
  "Después de amenazas de alcalde, retorna consulado móvil"- Oct. 24th

Santa Barbara Immigration Committee pushed for more fair checkpoint policies!

  • In South County, board member and long time PUEBLO volunteer Tere Jurado heads the all-volunteer immigration committee, which has worked to enter into a dialogue with both County Sheriff Bill Brown and Police Chief Camerino Sanchez in a series of public forums.  Out of these forums, we have obtained between 2,500 and 3,000 pages of data from the Sheriff’s Department and a commitment from the police chief to eliminate 30-day impoundments for unlicensed drivers, saving these drivers between $1,500 and $2,000 per incident. 
  • Additionally, in Fall 2011, members of the immigration committee collaborated with faculty and graduate students from the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) Center for New Racial Studies (UCNRS), on a survey, funded by a $20,000 grant from the Sociological Initiatives Foundation (SIF) that found serious issues of trust between the Latino community and the local police.
  • These relationships with local enforcement and this report will set the stage for upcoming campaigns to endorse pro-immigrant integration legislation coming online this election season: the COPA and TRUST Acts.



THRIVE- Family Leadership Summit & Education Committees

  • PUEBLO has joined a collaborative with THRIVE and school districts in Santa Maria and Guadalupe to bringing together parents, students, educators, and community leaders to a 1-day, trilingual (English, Spanish, Mixtec) Family Leadership Summit on Saturday, April 21st. The goal of the Summit is to develop a core group of parent leaders with the knowledge, skills, tools, and support needed to successfully guide their own children and other families through their education from birth to college, as well as affect institutional change in local schools, service agencies and the community as a whole. PUEBLO’s primarily role is to support parents after the summit by coordinating Education Committees.  In these committees PUEBLO organizers will support parents who wish to organize their own campaigns to improve the education of their children through policy advocacy, increased parent involvement, and civic participation.



Community College & High School Voter Registration Drives

  • PUEBLO has partnered with students at the local community college and high schools to implement voter registration drives focused on engaging Latino youth in the electoral process. PUEBLO organizers have provided administrative support and training on voter registration for the Allan Hancock College Associated Student Body Government and high school students at Santa Maria High School and Pioneer Valley High School. Together the youth have already registered over 300 voters since January. PUEBLO has coordinated a voter registration contest between the two high schools and secured a commitment from Allan Hancock College to sponsor a dance for the winning school.