February 18, 2016
Latino families, friends, supporters and business owners took to the streets surrounding Madison’s Capitol today to protest a pair of anti-immigration bills being fast-tracked in the GOP-controlled legislature.
The crowd was so large, organizer Christine Neumann-Ortiz could barely contain her excitement, declaring from the stage “This is a great day!”
Protesters came in from all over the state: Marshall, Waukesha, Fond du Lac, Sheboygan, Green Bay, and Milwaukee to declare that Wisconsin is NOT Arizona.
Wisconsin is the latest state to try crushing local protections for immigrant rights.
Across the country, with help from groups like the Koch-funded American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), right-wing state lawmakers have increasingly been turning to state “preemption” measures to override an array of progressive policy gains at the city or county level. At issue in Wisconsin are two bills–one blocks local “sanctuary city” policies and forces cities to enforce federal immigration law. Another bill overrides Milwaukee’s ordinance providing local identification cards to people who cannot access a state issued IDs.
“These bills are being driven by politicians aligned with the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) in an attempt to preempt local control and continue the shameful legacy of criminalization of immigrant workers and their families,” said Neumann-Ortiz, director of the immigrant rights group Voces de La Frontera.
– See more here.