The Chicagoist will be launching later but in the meantime please enjoy our archives.

Immigrants' Rights Activists Cited For Blocking Loop Traffic

By aaroncynic in News on Mar 25, 2013 7:30PM

Twenty protesters were issued citations at Federal Plaza on Friday during a demonstration demanding comprehensive immigration reform. Demonstrators blocked traffic for a short while, demanding lawmakers in Washington push immigration reform through Congress to prevent more families from being broken up by deportations. Alderman Ariel Reboyras, who was issued a citation along with aldermen Danny Solis (25th) and Joe Moreno (1st), told the Sun Times:

They’re going on recess, they’re taking time off to be with their families, and we’re asking them to think about what’s going on here today. Think about what’s been going on in the several years, for 20,000 individuals, families that’ll be broken up.

Organizers within the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refuge Rights say the longer Congress waits on a bill means that more families will be affected. In a statement after the rally, ICIRR said:

1100 people are deported everyday from the United States; nearly 20,000 families will be torn apart while Congress is home with their feet up during Easter Recess.

According to WBEZ, information given to various media outlets suggests some senators could be willing to eliminate family reunification visas in order to please Republicans. Tuyet Le of the Asian American Institute told WBEZ:

“That means that that person who comes for a job, they have to make a decision as to whether they’ll be reunited with their siblings ever again. These different issues in immigration reform are being used as chips, and so these are chips rather than being seen as families.”

Activists with and supporters of ICIRR say that they will continue to push Illinois Senator Dick Durbin as well as Mark Kirk during the recess until their voices are heard.