Immigrants plan May Day rallies to protest Trump policies

Posted May 09, 2017

International Workers' Day protests took place this year around the world, including in Paris, where demonstrations turned violent amid France's divisive presidential election. If you can't take the day off, there are other ways to show your support, even if it's just by spreading the word to someone who might be able to go to one of the many protests or go on strike themselves. Schools were open and the district said it was working with principals and substitute teachers to make sure classes would not be disrupted.

In Washington, D.C., commercial construction company owner Salvador Zelaya paid his employees to take the day off to attend a march. Zelaya says his 18 workers are spending the morning making banners.

Her message to Trump: "Stop bullying immigrants".

"We have had confirmed cases of people showing up here, to be a good citizen (s), to be a good resident (s) of the state", she said.

Some businesses were forced to close because their workers joined the rallies, eliciting a few complaints from small business owners.

A handful of Trump supporters wearing baseball caps with his campaign slogan "Make America Great Again" are in attendance.

Thousands of people from all over the U.S. have chanted, picketed and protested in demonstrations against Donald Trump's immigration policies, along with the traditional May Day labour march. At least three people were arrested and police urged the rest of the protesters, who included families with young children, to leave after they withdrew the permit for the march.

This year's May Day actions follow this and other major demonstrations in the first 100 days of Trump's presidency, including Saturday's People's Climate Marches, the March for Science in April and the Women's March on the day after the inauguration in January. It was a scene echoed on Monday in the West Coast city of Portland, Oregon, where protesters set off fires in downtown.

Thousands of people protested Monday in Los Angeles against President Donald Trump's immigration crackdown, and a handful of activists in San Francisco tried to block cars from entering and leaving the city's main federal immigration control building.

In the District, Maryland and Virginia, more than 200 businesses closed Monday as many immigrants skipped work, school and shopping for the day to underscore their contribution to the US economy, said Maria Fernanda Durand, communications manager for the immigrant rights groups CASA and CASA in Action.

Groups behind the events also took aim at other Trump policies they saw as discriminatory or xenophobic, including his bid, so far blocked by the courts, to ban travellers from several Muslim countries and temporarily turn away all refugees. But the focus in the USA was on Mr. Trump and his policies.

In the early evening, organizers expect thousands of demonstrators to gather at a rally in Manhattan's Foley Square for musical performances and speeches by union leaders and immigrants living in the country illegally. Trump has said his policies are meant to keep America safe.

Charmers Cafe in Rogers Park was offering free coffee to people on their way to or back from the protests, as it had in February for the Day Without Immigrants.

"This is May Day, this is International Worker Day, revived in 2006 by immigrants".

Immigrant advocates say they hope large crowds will get Trump and congressional lawmakers to rethink efforts to expand deportations and pressure local governments to assist federal deportation agents.

In Miami, Alberto and Maribel Resendiz closed their juice bar, losing an estimated revenue of $3,000, to join a rally. "We are here to fight to demonstrate we are visible, we contribute to the economy, to this country".