New Haven immigration organization protests ‘hate promoted by’ Trump

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NEW HAVEN — A local organization that defends the rights of immigrants organized a rally on Thursday to protest the new president.

Protest organizers started a chant, saying, “When I say people you say power. People:” “Power,” the protesters answered.

The Unidad Latina en Accion, or Latinos united in action, worked together with its allies, other members of the Connecticut Immigrant Rights Alliance, to “affirm community integrity amidst a climate of hate promoted by President-Elect Trump.”

The rally took place on the steps of the district courthouse on Church Street in New Haven, and was intended to show that the community refuses to be afraid.

“America is a continent of which we are a fundamental part, and many of us are indigenous (principally Mayan) Americans. We honor the sovereignty of First Nations, and stand in solidarity with them against U.S. imperialism. We are here to stay.”

The ULA is a grassroots organization that defends the labor, civil and human rights of immigrants in Greater New Haven. The organization holds weekly meetings to discuss issues facing the population.

The rally was organized because at recent meetings community members have spoken out about an increase in racism directed towards them during their daily lives, something they feel the Trump campaign contributed to by causing "a wave of xenophobia and violence against migrants, communities of color, Muslims, women and other marginalized groups."

In a statement inviting media organizations to the protest, ULA said, "Trump has given his followers implicit permission to hate."

However, protesters said they don't dispute Trump's presidency.

"We as Democrats respect the results of the election, we just want to state that we don't understand any policies that go against the people," said Wilmer Barzanno, a protester from Westbrook.

Another echoed the sentiment, adding we should work to understand each other. "There are a lot of people in this country who are hurting, but I also think that there are a lot of people in this country that are willing to work together," said Mojique Tyler, the protest organizer.

The group did discuss negatives of the Obama administration and a possible Clinton presidency, saying deportations are at their highest level, but added that "a Trump presidency threatens the very fabric of our community."

Another "solidarity rally in wake of Donald Trump presidency," this time hosted by the Citywide Youth Coalition Inc., will be held on Friday on the New Haven Green at 5:30 p.m. Click here for more information.