Protests against Immigration Reform continue by Mitch E.Perry04/07/06
About 600 students from 2 Miami area schools walked off their campuses today to protest congressional legislation wthat would tighten immigration laws without providing a road to citizenship for millions of illegal immigrants already in the country.
Hundreds of students carrying American, Haitain, Mexican Guatamalan and other flags recited the Pledge of Allegiance before leaving campus and repeated it while marching to City Hall.
Maria Rodriguez is with the Florida Immigrant Coalition (roll tape#1 o.q.â€?the eventâ€?)
Schools police Lieutenant Ed Torrens said the two-hour walkout was the largest student protest he had seen in 10 years of work in Miami-Dadeâ€¦More on local protests in a moment.
In terms of what the Immigration Legislation in the Senate that was defeated today looked like, local immigrant activists had mixed reaction to it.
Margarita Romo is the director of Farmworker Self Help (roll tape#1 o.q.â€?and thatâ€™s all peopleâ€¦.and thatâ€™s all peopleâ€?)
John Ovink is an immigration attorney who works in Dade City and Tampa, and past Chair of the Central Florida Chapter of the American Immigration Lawyers Association.
Ovink believes that even though the most revised Senate Bill went down to defeat, he sincerely believes that something that looks like it will ultimately come out of the Congress and be signed by President Bush , versus the much tougher companion bill in the House. (roll tape#2 o.q.â€?on their campaignâ€?)
Two weeks after massive Immigration rallies in Los Angeles, Pheonix and other places stunned the country, immigrant rights groups are planning further demonstrations in the next few days.
The most local demonstration is scheduled for tomorrow in Dade Cityâ€¦Margarita Romo of the Farmworker Self Help is helping to coordinate that rally(roll tape#1 o.q.â€?with nothingâ€?)
There are other major rallies planned throughout Florida on Mondayâ€¦Again, Maria Rodriguez with the Florida Immigrant Coalition (roll tape# to be here legallyâ€?)