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April 19 ‘Children’s March’ will urge legislators to amend ICE policies

The Massachusetts State House, in Boston. (Wikimedia Commons)

BOSTON — Marchers will gather at the Robert Gould Shaw Memorial on Thursday, 10:30-11 a.m., and head to the State House to protest federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) policies.

Led by children in families affected by ICE policies and Essex County Community Organization (ECCO) members, the marchers will urge state legislators to approve three key amendments to the 2019 budget bill that will protect immigrant families and strengthen communities.

ECCO in a press release said the amendments bar police inquiries about immigration status, prohibit state and local contracts with ICE and provide due process protections for immigrants in police custody.

Marchers, including ECCO member congregations, families, community leaders, and immigrant rights advocates, will highlight their cause with children waving handkerchiefs and creative signs and singing.

The march is scheduled to end in front of Gov. Baker’s State House office, where children will share stories, spoken word, and more singing. A delegation of clergy accompanied by some of the children will deliver the children’s letters to Baker’s aides and to aides for Massachusetts House Speaker Robert DeLeo.

The event is co-sponsored by ACLU MA, Agencia Alpha, American Friends Service Committee, Berkshire Immigrant Center, Brazilian Women’s Group, Brazilian Workers Center, Brockton Interfaith, Brockton Workers Alliance, Chelsea Collaborative, Coalition for Social Justice and the Dominican Development Center.

Additional sponsors include I Have a Future, Jewish Alliance for Law and Social Action, Jobs with Justice, KIPP Academy Lynn, Lynn Neighborhood Health Center, Lynn United for Change, Lynn Workers’ Center, Merrimack Valley Project, MCAN, MIRA, Neighbor to Neighbor, New Lynn Coalition, No Place for Hate Salem, Pioneer Valley Project, Progressive Mass, SEIU 32BJ, United for Justice with Peace, United Interfaith Action, UU Mass Action and Worcester Interfaith.

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