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May Day march against deportations

With immigration reform finally under discussion in Washington, thousands of Chicagoans will be marching on May Day, focused on ending deportations and demanding legalization for all immigrants.

Immigrant rights mobilizations have become a May Day tradition in Chicago in recent years, and this year’s supporting coalition is larger than ever, said organizer Jorge Mujica.

They’ll meet and rally at 2 p.m. at Union Park, Ashland and Lake, marching to Federal Plaza, Jackson and LaSalle, for a rally at 4:30 p.m.

At 2:30 p.m, the Chicago Federation of Labor and church and labor groups will mark May Day — an international holiday commemorating the immigrant-led movement for an eight-hour day in Chicago in 1886 — at the Haymarket Monument, Randolph and Desplaines, before joining the march to the Federal Plaza.

Dramatically ramped-up deportations — 400,000 a year under the current administration — have “really galvanized the community and highlighted the need for reform,” said Fred Tsao of the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights.  “They have affected many, many people in our communities.”

Dragnet raids, supposedly aimed at criminals, have swept up asylum seekers, lawful permanent residents with minor infractions, and immigrants with no criminal record, many of whom spend months in detention without judicial review, human rights groups say.

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