Amicus Curiae Brief Accepted

NACCS filed an Amicus Curiae Brief in support of Tucson's Ethnic Studies case.

On March 7, United States Circuit Court Judge, A. Wallace Tashima, accepted our brief for the Acosta v. Huppenthal, CV-10-623-TUC- AWT, the case in which students are challenging the law. The State of Arizona was opposed to NACCS filing the Amicus brief.

In his ruling, the Judge stated:  "The Court concludes that permitting NACCS to file such a brief is likely to assist in this case,  which is of general public interest."

This is indeed a  victory of monumental importance in fulfilling our mission for Chicana and Chicano Studies.  While this is the product of collective labor, it is essential to single out the courage and leadership of our Colega, Dr. Devon G. Peña, who dedicated many months to this endeavor.

For the full text of the brief and attachments see the following links:
Press Release

Always... Adelante!

Julia E. Curry Rodríguez, Ph.D.
Executive Director, NACCS

Other documents and websites

MAS Motion Filed
MAS Brief 
MAS Order


National Association For Chicana and Chicano Studies 39th Annual Conference

March 14, 2012  

Dr. Devon G. Peña, Immediate Past Chair
Dr. Julia Curry Rodriguez, Executive Director
James E. Garcia, Arizona Ethnic Studies Network,

The National Association for Chicana and Chicano Studies holds its 39th Annual Conference in Chicago at Palmer House Hilton Hotel, March 14-17, 2012


Thursday, March 15, 12:30 p.m.
Adams Foyer, 6th Floor
Palmer House Hilton Hotel
17 East Monroe St.
Chicago, IL

CHICAGO (March 12, 2012) The nation’s largest association of Latino scholars and educators will gather to address “a new era of Jim Crow attacks” and other issues impacting people of Mexican origin in the United States during its 40th annual conference March 14-17.

The theme of the National Association for Chicana and Chicano Scholars 2012 conference is “NACCS @ 40:  Celebrating Scholarship and Activism”. More than 600 scholars will participate in more than 110 panels, roundtables, workshops and plenary sessions on a wide range of topics.

“There is an ugly trend resurfacing across the country that finds Mexican and Mexican American communities under attack in ways that echo back to the dark days before the passage of the Civil Rights Movement,” said Devon G. Peña, Professor of Anthropology and Chicano Studies, University of Washington, and Immediate Past Chair of NACCS. “Much of our conference this year will highlight how scholars and teachers can constructively contribute to the discourse resulting from this disturbing turn of events.

Dr. Peña said a wide range of legislative initiatives across the nation is singling out for attack the country’s fast-growing Latino community in a variety of ways that impact everything from health care and immigration to education and environmental protection.

In response to an ongoing Arizona controversy, a press conference will be held March 15 at 12:30 p.m.  at the Palmer House Hilton Hotel in Chicago to criticize the recent decision by Arizona’s Department of Education to ban an award-winning and highly regarded Mexican American studies program in Tucson.

Twenty-six organizations joined NACCS in filing an amici curiae (‘friend of the court’) brief last week in federal court in Tucson, Arizona on behalf of plaintiffs in the historic and vitally significant case of Acosta v. Huppenthal. The case is challenging the constitutionality of the Arizona’s HB2281 law, which seeks to ban the teaching of Ethnic Studies in public schools. The ill-informed enforcement of the law has targeted a highly acclaimed and successful Mexican American Studies program in the Tucson Unified School District.

Arizona officials vigorously opposed the brief, but United States Circuit Court Judge A. Wallace Tashima accepted it declaring that: “The Court concludes that permitting NACCS to file such a brief is likely to assist in this case, which is of general public interest.”

“We thought it important to make our voices heard regarding the Tucson program, especially given the leadership of NACCS, which has long had a critical role in public policymaking as advocates for educational equity, promotion of Ethnic Studies, and improved educational achievement for underrepresented students,” said Dr. Julia Curry, Executive Director of NACCS.

The press conference will inform the public about the annual meeting and Chicana and Chicano Studies contributions to post-secondary and K-12 education, but most importantly will highlight the Acosta v. Huppenthal case, which threatens to redefine the future of Ethnic Studies in public schools across the country and establish standards for 1st and 14th Amendment rights of students and teachers.

Concurrently a press conference organized by Save Ethnic Studies and the Arizona Ethnic Studies Network will be held in Tucson, Arizona convened by students, teachers, and community members involved in the lawsuit and the Save Ethnic Studies campaign.

Peña added that the attack on Chicana and Chicano Studies is part of an orchestrated campaign that questions the loyalty of citizens based on race, ethnicity, or national origin. Scholars widely view these attacks as motivated by pathological fear and a response to irreversible demographic transitions turning the U.S. into a majority of minorities. According to Curry, “the attacks display a new Jim Crow attacking diversity of global realities, shared borders, and histories that bind the futures of Mexican and United States people.”

The hundreds of scholars, teachers, students, and activists convening in Chicago will address the challenges of economic hardship, academic downsizing, skyrocketing fees, foreclosures, poverty and high unemployment, educational discrimination, immigration restrictions, disproportionate environmental impacts, culture and identity issues, and the devaluing of higher education by forces that seek to deny the broader public access to knowledge, skills, and advanced training.

Celebrating NACCS’ 40th anniversary, conference participants will present research papers, discuss strategies to address the challenges facing higher education, and celebrate the vital contributions of Ethnic Studies to the development of our nation’s knowledge, humanities, and sciences.

For more detailed information please go to:


The National Association for Chicana and Chicano Studies, NACCS and the NACCS logo are registered in the U.S. Pat. & Tm. Office. Use of the name or the logo without permission of the organization can result in legal action.