Six People Blockade Lobby of Trump Holiday Inn to Say #NoHateInOurState

Wisconsinites Risk Arrest to Oppose #HostForHate One Day Before Trump Rally

Cindy Breunig, Groundwork: 608-219-0782

Christine Irvine, SURJ: 704-813-3361

Janesville - Today at 6:30pm six people locked themselves together using PVC pipe in the lobby of the Holiday Inn Express Janesville, surrounded by two dozen others, to demand “Holiday Inn: Don’t be a Host for Hate”. Tomorrow the hotel’s convention center is scheduled to host Donald Trump, in spite of Holiday Inn’s alleged policy that the chain "doesn't tolerate racial discrimination".

The six Wisconsin residents, five of whom are white and one of whom is biracial, said in a statement: “Donald Trump’s hate speech has had real, violent consequences for Wisconsinites, and there should be costs to companies like Holiday Inn that profit from his hate-mongering. Trump’s racism has emboldened violent attacks on people of color across the country -  eroding safety for Holiday Inn’s clients and employees of color, to say nothing of millions of others.”

Shawna Lutzow of Beloit, WI, which is a few miles from Janesville, risked arrest today because, she said, "I will not tolerate hate and bigotry. Trump's tactics have encouraged people to speak out and act out on their racism and I am fearful for the future. I feel like it is my responsibility, as a white person, to put my body on the line in the name of justice and I am prepared to do what it takes to stand up to hate."

All six Wisconsinites are members of Showing Up for Racial Justice, a national network of 30,000 people and 150 chapters & affiliate groups taking action to end white support for racism, and Groundwork Madison, a community organization working to achieve racial justice and equity in Dane County, Wisconsin.

Holiday Inn agreed to host the event tomorrow despite Trump’s discriminatory views and the pattern of violence directed toward peaceful protestors and people of color in his audiences.  Given recent threats of violence toward local protest organizers, concerned community members are calling upon the Holiday Inn to keep this hate out of Wisconsin.

Donald Trump is running on a platform that fuels violence towards immigrants, Muslims and all people of color.  In Southeastern Wisconsin, we are still reeling from the recent hate crime murder of neighbors for not speaking English.   

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