Fliers circulating on social media are urging all immigrants to skip work and school and to refrain from shopping on Thursday in defiance of President Donald Trump’s harsh immigration pledges. However, schools expect many of their teachers and staff members to participate in the protest. “But as an administration, we don’t have a choice right now”.
The movement is a response to President Trump’s immigration agenda, which includes a pledge to seal the USA border with Mexico, and a travel ban on citizens of seven majority-Muslim countries (which is now on hold).
This accompanying map shows some of the restaurants and businesses in the San Francisco Bay Area that are closing or in some other way supporting the national protest, along with some other demonstrations planned around the region.
Some observers have argued that the rallies drew a backlash in the form of increased vigilante activity along the border, tough anti-immigration legislation in states like Arizona, and, more recently, Mr. Trump’s calls for a border wall and mass deportations. A similar protest was held in Milwaukee on Monday.
Dozens of restaurants, which rely heavily on immigrant workers, and other businesses in cities such as Philadelphia, New York, Houston and Raleigh, North Carolina, have vowed to shut their doors on Thursday in solidarity with no-show workers.
Protesters at the Day Without An Immigrant event.
Angela Fernandez with the Northern Manhattan Coalition for Immigrant Rights told me the name behind Thursday’s action comes from the movie “A Day without Mexicans”. “We’re humans. We have to support each other”. “We also respect all who decide not to come into work today and will not consider them a no-show”.
“This question of immigrants and the hospitality of the United States is terribly important, both for them and for us”, said Burger. “We’ve kind of turned the school around in making sure that for those children who do come to school, there will be adults available”.
Today is a little more complicated for the nation’s immigrants whose work has become crucial to their communities in the Trump era. “We’re here to support our families”. Organizers appealed to immigrants from all walks of life to take part, but the effects were felt most strongly in the restaurant industry, which has always been a first step up the economic ladder for newcomers to America with its many jobs for cooks, dishwashers and servers.