St. Paul, MN – More than 40 immigrant rights activists from all over the state of Minnesota rallied at the capitol here, February 11, the opening day of the legislative session. People traveled from as far as Zimmerman and Rochester to participate in the action. The rally and lobbying action were organized by Minnesota Immigrant Movement (MIM) and Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Committee (MIRAC). Activists asked the Minnesota legislature to support driver’s licenses for all and to make Minnesota a sanctuary state.
Massive community outpouring fills hearing and packs two overflow rooms
Saint Paul, MN – Hundreds of immigrants and supporters filled the Minnesota State Capitol on February 28 for the first committee hearing of House File 1500, the ‘drivers license for all’ bill. The hearing room quickly filled to capacity, as did two overflow rooms. After more than two hours of public testimony and debate, the House Transportation Finance and Policy Committee voted to pass the bill and refer it to the House Ways and Means Committee for the next step in the process.
Saint Paul, MN – As the Republican-controlled state House of Representatives voted on a bill, May 17, to change Minnesota drivers license to comply with the federal government’s REAL ID security program, immigrant rights activists were there demanding that the politicians keep anti-immigrant politics out of the bill.
Saint Paul, MN – Around 500 people, mostly Latino immigrants, along with many supporters, filled the Minnesota State Capitol on March 19 for the first committee hearing of the drivers license bill, SF224/HF97. The hearing room quickly filled to capacity, with a large crowd of people still outside of the room while the Senate Transportation Committee voted to approve the bill. This committee vote is just the first of several steps for immigrants to win the right to a drivers license in Minnesota.
Tampa, FL – A dozen people came together here, Feb. 26, to confront the city council and demand its members support drivers licenses for the undocumented. Alicia Gazga led the rally and chanted, “City council, shame on you!” and “What do we want? Licenses! When do we want them? Now!”
Los Angeles, CA – The El Sereno community in East Los Angeles came out to protest another police checkpoint May 24. Mexican, Chicano and Central American residents, most of whom are immigrants, challenged the second LAPD checkpoint in the area this month. Residents felt targeted by the LAPD Traffic Division as this checkpoint was on Huntington Drive, located in the heart of the community, near a major market.
Saint Paul, MN – More than three hundred Latino immigrants and supporters rallied in the Capitol rotunda and marched to Governor Dayton’s office March 26 to press Governor Dayton and House Speaker Paul Thissen to pass HF348, the bill for drivers licenses for all. The rally was organized by Mesa Latina and supported broadly by the immigrant rights movement.
Phoenix, AZ – Governor Jan Brewer delivered her business-as-usual State of the State address here on Jan. 13. Outside the capitol building, a crowd of nearly 100 students and community activists protested the “State of Hate” created by Arizona Republicans. Led by Citizens for a Better Arizona, a coalition of groups rallied, including Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) of Tucson.
Los Angeles, CA – A mass rally and march was held in Huntington Park, May 15, in support of SB1160 – a bill that allows undocumented immigrants to get drivers licenses. Several groups organized the march, including the Mexican American Political Association, Centro CSO and Consejo de Federaciones Mexicanas. The festive event kicked off with music and speakers at Salt Lake Park and then began marching on Florence Avenue in the heart of the city. The march received enthusiastic support from pedestrians and motorists as it entered Pacific Avenue, the main shopping district, with the public yelling and clapping to show support. A rally was held at the civic center with music by the popular Mexican Norteno singers. The speakers hit hard at Governor Schwarzenegger and the racists Republicans who forced the repeal of a similar bill late last year.