Thousands expected at LA May Day rally

Thousands expected at LA May Day rally

Immigrant rights groups and unions opposed to President Donald Trump's immigration crackdown rallied Monday in California, with protesters in San Francisco launching the demonstrations by attempting to block access to the downtown U.S. Immigration and Enforcement Office.

And in Portland, Oregon, police shut down a protest they said had become a riot, as marchers began throwing smoke bombs and other items at officers. Police said they made more than two dozen arrests as a group of anarchists wearing black bandanas and ski masks grew unruly, reportedly breaking windows at businesses, setting fires on downtown streets and damaging a police auto.

Police said on Twitter Monday that anarchists destroyed a police auto, damaged numerous windows and property, started fires in the streets and attacked police.

Ms Doris Meissner, commissioner of the Immigration and Naturalisation Service in the Clinton administration, said: "The bottom line is that they have entirely changed the narrative around immigration".

The "Here to Stay" rallies in Boston, Chelsea, and Everett on Monday are also meant to be a call for MA lawmakers to approve the Safe Communities Act.

In Concord, people gathered at Meadow Homes Park to urge city leaders to adopt a sanctuary policy and a rent stabilization ordinance.

Organizers say tens of thousands are expected to march downtown to City Hall on Monday after groups that held separate May 1 events in the past joined together this year.

Maria Trujillo, a janitor who is now a US citizen, said she knows "what it's like to be afraid in her own community". "They see us as if we were just cheap labor, when really we are the labor force of this country".

At 11 a.m., workers and activists will hold a May Day rally at Justin Herman Plaza in San Francisco.

In New York, several protesters were arrested for blocking the entrance to Wells Fargo over the bank's role financing private Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention centers, according to local news reports. Given the widespread antipathy toward Trump anti-immigration policies, many predicted that this year's turnout may be bigger than ever around the world. "We are going to continue to educate our community, we are going to continue to grow our deportation defense network to defend our community", Martinez said.




In addition to rallies, immigrant rights activists in communities in Indiana, Massachusetts, Texas and elsewhere are calling for strikes to show Americans the demand for immigrant labor and immigrants' purchasing power. At the White House gates, they demanded "Donald Trump has got to go!"

Union members typically march globally on May 1 to support workers' rights.

Several of those marches took place in Pennsylvania.

Although May Day is not marked in the United States as a national or official holiday, the annual event in other countries commemorates an episode that occurred in Chicago on May 4, 1886, which led to violence.

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.

More than 200,000 USA workers engineered a nationwide strike for an eight-hour workday on May 1, 1886, in what was supposed to be several days of protest.

A decade ago, immigration rights marches drew more than a million people and successfully blocked an anti-immigration bill in the U.S. Congress. Protesters are hoping that marches around the country, including NY and Los Angeles, can prove equally successful.

In cities large and small, the protests intensified throughout the day.

Worldwide, union members traditionally march on May 1 for workers' rights.

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