As the 85th Texas Legislature begins, members of an organization working to improve the quality of life for minorities are speaking out. They're telling lawmakers what bills they're getting behind this session and why they want their support.
Tuesday, The Austin Justice Coalition and allied groups met for the third annual "Millions March Texas." The groups walked about 12 blocks from Huston Tillotson University to the Texas State Capitol. There they met with different lawmakers, stating their support for several bills and asking for theirs.
"I think a lot of the reps were surprised," Austin Justice Coalition President Chas Moore. "With everything that's going on, there's kind of a decline in trust when it comes to lawmakers, police or people that represent the quote on quote system, but one thing we believe in is these are just people too. We have to respect them. We have to respect their job, their role, but we also have to hold them accountable."
There are 15 bills they're backing this session. These include HB 158, HB 235, HB 245, HB 673, HB 854, HB 567, HB 574, HB 774, HB 292, HB 676, HB 67, SB 90, HB 275, HB 81 and HB 82.
Topics include police accountability, safer traffic stops, 17-year-olds being prosecuted as juveniles, repealing the Driver Responsibility Program and decriminalizing marijuana.