On the heels of last Saturday’s powerful #HereToStay action, immigrants from all over the country will be trekking to the Women’s March on Washington in a display of resistance to the forces of hate.
“It is our moral duty to keep families together,” states the Women’s March platform, “and empower all aspiring Americans to fully participate in, and contribute to, our economy and society. We reject mass deportation, family detention, violations of due process and violence against queer and trans migrants.”
More than 150,000 people are expected to attend Saturday’s march on Washington, with “sister marches” scheduled to take place in every state in the nation. Around the world, one million people are expected to peacefully demonstrate in opposition to the upcoming Donald Trump Administration.
“The diverse groups participating — from Amnesty International to Planned Parenthood— see the marches as an orientation of sorts for a longer term resistance to the Trump agenda,” notes USA Today.
Among the national march attendees are three immigrant leaders from Ohio and Florida, who shared with us why they’ve decided to add their powerful voices to Saturday’s event.
Anabel Barron, Vice-President of the Lorain Ohio Immigrant Rights Association and DAPA-Eligible Mom
“I’m attending the march because I can’t think of a better platform to raise my voice on immigration issues, especially with the new Presidential administration. I want them to at least know that we are here and we are not alone — we have the American community standing by us. All we want is a better life for our kids and ourselves.”
“What’s inspiring me to march is my kids, because if I don’t raise my voice, nothing will change. Immigrant families like mine will continue to be ripped apart by this broken immigration system. Being able to give my kids a good morning kiss is a privilege that some people of my community do not have because they are in a detention center, or they already being deported to their native countries. This somehow has to come to an end.”
“I want everyone to see me representing the undocumented community of Lorain, Ohio and other parts of the US where my community is still living in the shadows and afraid of this new Presidential administration. I want them to know that I’m one of them and I’m not afraid anymore. I will fight for each and one of us. I will fight for respect and a life with dignity.”
Jose Mendez, a DACA recipient and Director of DreamActivist Ohio
“I’m attending the march to show the new administration that we are united as a community across the country, not only to protect women’s rights, but also united to protect the undocumented community.”
“I’m inspired by my parents. They sacrificed everything to give me a good life in this country, and I won’t let a new administration tear up my family. I’m here to stay until they drag me out.”
“I want to convey that the majority of immigrants are good people and to show the new administration he has a chance to keep DACA.”
“I will defend my parents and any undocumented immigrant as I do in my state from unfair practices.”
Maria Bilbao, a Domestic Worker and Organizer with United Families in Florida
“I’m attending the march because I believe there’s no other option. We have to take a stand against this administration because it’s threatening everything we’ve won, all of our victories. I think we’re under threat by this administration, and we have take a stand, we have to rise up. I think of it as the start of a resistance to everything Donald Trump means to us.”
“I’m an activist. I think there’s a lot of fear, but there’s also a lot of resilience. We have to organize to protect each other. There’s a lot of fear of what’s coming, lots of uncertainty, but let’s organize so we can protect people.”
“My message to the community is we must rise up, we must organize, let’s take control of our lives. That’s the only way, organizing and not staying home complaining or being afraid. We have to organize and join with others to resist what’s coming, because the next four years will not be easy. And let’s also organize politically, because it’s very important they hear us and that’s why it’s very important to participate in democracy and vote.”
“My message to Donald Trump is that we will resist him. We are not going to let him do everything he promised he would do.”