On Mexico’s Independence Day Monday, hundreds of protesters marched from the 24th Street BART station to San Francisco City Hall to send a message to the White House. Those at the rally demand the Trump administration stop detaining undocumented individuals and separating families who enter through U.S. borders.
The march and rally coincides with a resolution the San Francisco Board of Supervisors plans to take up Tuesday that, if passed, will formalize city officials’ support to close immigration detention camps and bring attention to the treatment of adults and children inside the centers.
Sarah Souza, San Francisco Latino Democratic Club president and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival recipient, spoke to the crowd from the steps City Hall Monday.
“We are demanding to stop family separation. Free the children now.”
Aaron Goodwin, a volunteer with the Close the Camps – Free Our Children Coalition, said the group is targeting tech companies that assist government agencies to gather information on undocumented individuals. One of those companies is Palo Alto-based Palantir, Goodwin claims.
Reminding the crowd that Palo Alto is a sanctuary city, Goodwin said:
“Why are we providing tech for ICE in the Bay Area?”
A number of city supervisors joined the rally at City Hall, including supervisors Shamann Walton and Hillary Ronen.
“We will not stand silent when children and families are being separated and caged at the border. We will not stand silent when our incredible teenagers that are graduating from high school and college and are ready to contribute to society, can’t do so because we don’t have a strong and safe DACA program for them.”
Assemblyman David Chiu, D-San Francisco, recalled a recent trip he took to a detention center near the San Diego-Mexico border with the Asian and Pacific Islander Legislative Caucus.
“We saw the inhumane treatment that are being afforded to our 2-year-old’s, to our kids, to parents. This is criminal activity.”
Mayor London Breed also joined the crowd and said:
“Now, 209 years later, where we should be celebrating independence of Mexico, when we should be celebrating this incredible holiday, we find that we have to fight for independence today for our sanctuary city and the values we hold dear to our city.”
Breed on Friday celebrated Mexico’s Independence Day with a flag raising at City Hall in coordination with the Consulate General of Mexico.
President Donald Trump is planning to visit the Bay Area Tuesday for a scheduled fundraiser to support his 2020 re-election campaign. Although the exact location has been kept under wraps, protesters and the “baby Trump” balloon are expected in the Los Altos area.