Shelley Luther Wants to Use GoFundMe for Two Laredo Women Who Were Unjustly Imprisoned for Offering Beauty Services

Following the release of Dallas salon owner Shelley Luther on May 7, 2020, Luther has new plans with the money she received on GoFundMe.

On May 8, Luther was in front of her Dallas business, Salon A La Mode, and talked about her future plans. Additionally, her comments came  following U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz’s visit to her salon in the morning to provide support and receive a haircut.

Luther was involved in a drawn out fight with local officials after she reopened her salon in defiance of the city’s stay-at-home order. Dallas judge Eric Moye found her in contempt of court on May 5 after she did not apologize for her actions, which notably included her decision to publicly tear up a cease-and-desist letter from the county at a political rally she gave a speech at.

On May 5, she was sentenced to seven days in jail. However, statewide leaders like Attorney General Ken Paxton and Governor Greg Abbott were able to get her out of jail on May 7.

During her legal struggle, supporters had been pitching in to a GoFundMe page that was set up for her. It eventually reached its target of $500,000. Now, Luther wants to give out the money to people who desperately need it.

After using some of the money to pay off her legal fees and mortgage, she announced that she has other plans with the money.

“We have already planned on spreading some of that gift today in South Dallas. I’ve already reached out, trying to get in contact with the two ladies in Laredo and I would like to pay for any of their attorney fees, any citations they have, and maybe give them a little bit of head-start money,” Luther stated.

The two Laredo women who Luther mentioned are Ana Isabel Castro-Garcia and Brenda Stephanie Mata. On April 15, they were both arrested for allegedly selling beauty services from their homes, which also violated shutdown orders during the pandemic.

The two women were also mentioned by Abbott after he changed his executive orders on May 6 to get rid of jail time for violations of these orders.

“I had to do what I felt was right in this situation, and whether they support it or not… if they’re a salon owner, they are getting to open 10 days earlier,” Luther commented.

Salons and barber shops have now been reopened in Texas but with regulations that still maintain social distancing practices. Last week, businesses such as retail stores and restaurants reopened at 25% capacity.

Although Texas did the right thing by declaring gun stores to be essential businesses, the government dropped the ball by not protecting small businesses like Luther’s.

Abbott will need to correct course and make sure that Texas undergoes a more thorough re-opening.

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