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San Francisco | Immigrant Rights

May Day in the Bay #2
by Christina Aanestad
Monday May 1st, 2006 6:10 PM
An estimated 50,00 people marched in San Francisco for immigrant's rights
today. Immigrant's rights activists called for work stoppage on international
workers days and general boycott to show how the nation depends on immigrant
labor. Christina aanestad reports from San Francisco.
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Tens of thousands of protesters, many of them wearing white, filled Market
Sreet from Justin Herman Plaza to the Civic Center to support the day without
immigrants and to call for amnesty for those who are undocumented. Ahmed Abozayd
vice president of Service Employees International Union local 87 says the nation
depends on immigrant labor.
>
>"This country was built on immigrants and it should continue to be
built by immigrants.
>We ask every workers in the nation to stop working today to support the
immigrants and for the country to know what immigrants really do in san
francisco and also in teh united states."
>
>. While media outlets like FOX news have criticised immigrants rights
activists for waving foreign flags in the US-many protesters brought both
Mexican and American flags, celebrating their cultural heritage and civil rights
in the US.
>
>"We are trying to be citizens of this country. we are not criminals we
are workers-I am immigrant from els Salvador 42 years in the country and I think
we all need justice we are not criminals awe are not terrorist s we are workers.
I come here for justice-pra legalization por todos. there a real strong anti
immigrant feeling in the governmen0 tand it does a great disservice to our
country and these people do a great service to our country and they should be
legal. We are of value. We're here to support out country let them know we got
power we got work and fight for our rights."
>
>San Francisco's supervisor Chris Daly authored local legislation earlier
this year, that opposes the Sensenbrenner bill, HR 4437 and opposes using city
money to enforce federal immigration laws. Daly says' this years May Day is a
sign of resistance to right wing attacks against family values.
>
>" It's a bald face attack aginst immigrants in this country. not just
immigrants but those of us who work with undocumented immigrants clearly a right
wing attack against San Francisco's values. There is large resistance and
growing resistance to whets happening in this country and the right wing values
that they are inflicting upon us so this is such a great day..."