November 10, 2016

LOS ANGELES, CA - In the aftermath of Tuesday's election, reports have surfaced of problems at schools, including anti-immigrant bullying. MALDEF calls on local and state officials to move swiftly to address any incidents of uncivil discourse in our schools.

Please attribute the following statement to MALDEF President and General Counsel Thomas A. Saenz.

"Every public school in the state of California is obligated under both state and federal law to step in to prevent and address bullying or harassment on any prohibited basis, including on the basis of actual or assumed immigration status or on the basis of race or ethnicity. These obligations are grounded in the federal and state constitutions; they have not and will not change regardless of who has been elected president or who is serving as president.

MALDEF calls upon school superintendents, principals, other administrators, and teachers to act promptly to address any bullying or harassment tied to the Trump campaign's regrettable rhetoric around immigration, and to take proactive steps to prevent such activity. MALDEF will not hesitate to take legal action against any school that fails to comply with its constitutional and legal obligations with respect to any such conduct."

Founded in 1968, MALDEF is the nation's leading Latino legal civil rights organization. Often described as the "Latino Legal Voice for Civil Rights in America" MALDEF promotes social change through advocacy, communications, community education, and litigation in the areas of education, employment, immigrant rights, and political access. For more information on MALDEF, please visit:

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