BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Hundreds of people gathered in downtown Baltimore pushing for immigrants’ rights as the possibility of immigration raids looms.
Community activists came together to protest President Donald Trump’s administration’s immigration policies, saying raids and deportations are not welcome.
“The immigrants in Baltimore are part of the social fabric of the city. They’re welcome here just like the rest of us,” said Dan Malinsky with Sanctuary Streets Baltimore.
The crowd chanted that message, which also adorned signs. But for Sarah Ochoa, it’s personal.
“I’m out here because my parents are immigrants,” she said. “I feel everyone should have the right to due process and be treated humanely.”
The rally comes after President Trump delayed Immigration and Customs Enforcement raids in 10 cities, including Baltimore, targeting around 2,000 immigrants who have missed a court hearing or received a deportation order.
“The vast majority never show up for their hearing a year, 18 months down the road, so the president is doing his job,” Vice President Mike Pence said on “Face The Nation” Sunday.
Despite the president postponing the ICE raids, witnesses told WJZ they saw six people arrested near a Columbia gas station Wednesday.
Baltimore resident Reuben Flores was among the crowd of people outside ICE headquarters at Thursday’s rally.
“I think it’s incredibly scary for immigrants both legal and who do not have papers living in the United States,” he said.
If ICE agents come knocking, some rally attendees said they will stand together.
“People need to be treated humanely, they need to be given due process, they need to be given a fair chance to apply,” Ochoa said.
Local organizations like CASA said they are available to help anyone who is in the country illegally by teaching them what rights they have, like the rights to remain silent and to obtain an attorney.