More than 100 citations were issued by Chicago police for the blocking of traffic by protestors at an immigration rally downtown on November 6th, the Chicago Tribune says. The protest, referred to as the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights rally, saw hundreds of peaceful but loud demonstrators in and around Clark Street and Congress Parkway area in Chicago’s Loop, in which is situated the regional building of the US Citizenship and Immigration Services.
The demonstrators, a number of whom were affiliated with immigrant rights organizations and labor unions, arrived at a busy area of downtown in the midst of rush hour, blocking traffic for around three quarters of an hour before being removed by law enforcement.
The rally’s timing was intended to be disruptive, in the hope of leading to greater public exposure that would result in the highlighting of the immigration issue. Several local politicians such as Chicago Alderman Joe Moreno were drawn to comment on the rally. “This is personal for me,” Moreno notes, referring to the fact that while his grandfather was given a Purple Heart during World War II, he was also then handed a non-citizen discharge for being born in Mexico. “It’s also a matter of just changing terrible policy.”
Demonstrators made their point with signs and speeches, with many telling stories of how family members had been deported from the United States and their families torn apart by the US Citizenship and Immigration Services.