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by Coalition in Defense of Immigrant Rights Thursday, Sep. 07, 2006 at 8:25 AM 213-241-0906 337 Glendale Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90026

Diffferent Immigrant rights groups and coalitions stepped up their mass actions nationwide in more than 6 major cities to force the US Congress to enact laws that will give amnesty and full rights to more than 12 million undocumented immigrants in the United States. More mass actions is slated from September 7 to September 9 in protest of the much delayed congressional action on the immigration reform law that will legalize at least 3 to 5 million undocumented immigrants and at least 7 million workers as “guest workers” in the SB 2611 or the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Bill that all immigrant rights groups and advocate rejects as “modified HR 4437”.

CDIR Immigrant Rights Update

U.S. Immigrant Rights Groups Steps Up Nationwide Rallies in Major Cities for Amnesty and Legalization

Los Angeles—Different Immigrant rights groups and coalitions stepped up their mass actions nationwide in more than 6 major cities to force the US Congress to enact laws that will give amnesty and full rights to more than 12 million undocumented immigrants in the United States.

More mass actions is slated from September 7 to September 9 in protest of the much delayed congressional action on the immigration reform law that will legalize at least 3 to 5 million undocumented immigrants and at least 7 million workers as “guest workers” in the SB 2611 or the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Bill that all immigrant rights groups and advocate rejects as “modified HR 4437”.

From September 2, 2005 different mass actions attended by tens of thousands of immigrants ands advocates were held all over the United States. Immigrant rights advocacy groups combined with different labor unions and coalitions during the long Labor Day weekend. Labor groups, anti war and other progressive groups together with the immigrant rights advocates banded together to push the people’s agenda.

- In San Francisco last September 4, more than 8,000 marchers led by the Bay Area Unity Coalition for Immigrant Rights in the USA marched from the Justin Herman Plaza to the Civic Center in San Francisco and held a rally for immigrant rights. The AJLPP Bay Area figured prominently with the Deporte dela Migra and other Filipino American organizations.

- In Chicago, last September 3 and 4, hundreds of immigrants and advocates marched from St, Mary’s Church after a night vigil to the offices of Speaker of the House, Rep. Dennis Hartest, Republican from Illinois to protest the deportation of Elvira Arellano who now protected in a sanctuary at the local Methodist Church in Chicago.

- In Los Angeles last September 2, least 3,000 immigrant and advocated marched from Olympic and Broadway to City Hall to demand legalization and support the struggle of Elvira Arellano, a single mother not to be deported in Chicago. The march was led by the Los Angeles based March 25 Coalition. Though smaller in numbers unlike the mobilizations from March to May this year, the mass actions can be considered a muscle flexing for bigger rallies in the offing.

- San Jose, California on the same day, more than 10,000 immigrants and advocates marched to City Hall to push for amnesty and legalization. California’s capital, Sacramento was also busy marching that day expressing support for immigrant rights.

- In Oakland, thousands of rallyists marched for the National Day of Action for Immigrant Rights on Labor Day and held a rally in front of the Oakland Federal building. Also in Fresno, hundred also mobilized in March onwards Fulton mall.

- In Phoenix, Arizona, more than 10,0000 marched towards the Civic Center to voice out their protest and demand for amnesty and legalization. There were marches also in San Paul, Minnesota and in Cincinnati, Ohio.

-In Seattle, more than 2,000 demonstrators marched for two hours towards the Civic center to support immigrant rights. AJLPP –Seattle was involved in the march. 1lt. Ehren Watada, a soldier who refused to serve in Iraq also joined the march.

-Last September 4, in Wilmington, California, apparently without respect for unions or workers, a handful of racist minutemen attempted to invade and disrupt the annual Union Labor Day picnic and festival at Banning Park, Willmington. California. At about 12:15, about a dozen minutemen with signs managed to get about a hundred feet into the park before they were confronted by a couple of hundred union members. Coincidentally, as they approached, the SEIU speaker was talking about the "most vulnerable" workers, those who work for less than minimum wage without union protection. As the words "cazamigrantes" and "minutemen" spread through the park and the crowd grew, the police and union workers intervened to move the minutemen out of the park. By 12:30, the minutemen had re-assembled across the street and protested unnoticed for the rest of the celebration.

The family fiesta, with classic cars and classic rock, speakers, and booths for ILWU, IWW, UTLA,SEIU, Teamsters, and today's heroes, the EAA, continued without incident. They were joined by numerous organizations supporting the workers' struggle, including ANSWER-LA, Radical Women, the International Socialist Organization, and the Peace and Freedom Party. Earlier, last week of August, immigrant rights groups chased the racist minutemen organizations in a rally in Maywood, California.

Cardinal Mahony Calls for Amnesty and Legalization

Los Angeles Roman Catholic Church Cardinal Roger Mahony called for “ the enactment of humane and just laws for 12 million undocumented immigrants in the United States” during his homily in the Our Lady of the Angels Cathedral last Sunday’s mass for the September 4 Labor Day.

He called on the US Congress not to play politics and play with the lives of millions of “working and honest people” in the country. He blamed Congress for not acting with dispatch and enact laws for the poor and the workers. He said: “Congress in to blame for not enacting laws during the 1986 amnesty that led to this mess.”

Cardinal Mahony was a prominent advocate for immigrant rights. He opposed the unjust HR 4437 and promised to defy the bill if it becomes a law. He even attended and led the marches and rallies from March 25 to may 1 in Los Angeles and spoke out for immigrant rights reforms. The HR 4437 is still up in the air with a now version in the Senate, the SB 2611 or the Comprehensive Immigrant Reform Act that all immigrant rights organization opposes. They call is the “modified HR 4437 that criminalizes immigrants.”

More Mass Actions from September 7- 9 natiowide.

Bigger mass actions are slated in Los Angeles on September 9 after the national congress of Latino organizations called Congreso de la Raza (Congress of the Race) to be held from September 6 to 9 in Los Angeles.

The big mobilization will be held in the Cornfields of Chinatown. The labor unions connected with the We Are America Coalition, the Win to Change Coalition, the County Federation of Labor, the Coalition in Defense of Immigrant Rights (CDIR) and MIWON will be mobilizing for the September 9 mass action.

On September 7, a big rally is slated to be held in the nation’s capital, Washington DC to call for congressional actions for genuine immigrant rights reforms. The rally will be led by labor and immigrant rights advocates. ###

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