Find what you love to do and utilize your strengths to join the movement. There is no one way to resist.
Tell us a little bit about yourself!
Sadie Hernandez: My name is Sadie Hernandez and I’m a 23 year old reproductive justice advocate from the border town of Brownsville Texas. You will never see me without my phone or a manicure, and you can follow me on twitter at @sadieeehdz.
How are you currently working to make change in your community?
SH: I work at Planned Parenthood Texas Votes, so I spend most of my time digitally organizing for reproductive rights in Texas. I make sure our online outreach makes women’s politics in Texas understandable, relatable, and shareable. It is especially important for my community in the Rio Grande Valley to access care, so I make sure fight at the Capitol for their rights by visiting the offices of our legislators to pass on the stories and feelings of people I get from back home every time something happens.
I also work with Advocates for Youth closely to fight for reproductive rights for young women of color on a national level.
When I first started reproductive rights advocacy, I realized the lack of representation for Chicanos and Latinxs, working class people, and young people. Because of this, I make sure to center my communities in all the work we do. This means taking advantage of my placement in predominantly white upper class spaces, using my privilege to speak to people outside of the Rio Grande Valley and Texas about the issues we’re facing and the resilience of our community, and calling people like me in to the movement and calling bad politicians out. I mostly do this through media and news outlets, because that’s one of the most accessible ways for Texans of color to see this information.
How do you keep yourself focused, motivated, and energized?
SH: First off, Lady Gaga, Cher, and Cardi B keep me energized.
But on a serious note, I keep myself focused, motivated, and energized with the stories I hear from Texans across the state. From Brownsville to Dallas, I’ve heard the good and bad experiences of healthcare in our system. This doesn’t end at access, but stories about how racism impacts communities, the ways undocumented people have to navigate the health system, the way people with government insurance and private insurance are treated differently, language barriers, and the list goes on. This keeps me going, because these injustices won’t end by me standing by in silence and inaction.
To be honest, I also do this for myself. I deserve access to quality healthcare regardless of the fact that I am a young working class Chicana. Moreso, the services I, and women across the US, access shouldn’t be determined by out of touch men who demonize and judge the way I live my life.
What advice would you give to someone who's looking to become more active, but doesn't know where to start?
SH: Find what you love to do and utilize your strengths to join the movement. There is no one way to resist. There’s regular organizing and volunteering which includes petitions, talking to people, and protesting, but sometimes that isn’t for everyone. For example, artists create and donate to organizations. I’ve seen regular paintings and drawings, resistance manicures, “protest cakes,” and my favorite - dragtivists. From experience I know introverts prefer to volunteer to do data entry. There’s something for everyone! I started off as a college student and volunteer on twitter, and now I’m a digital organizer. You can do it!