Hundreds of Portlanders crowded the North Park Blocks this morning to peacefully protest the White House immigration policy that has led to more than 2,000 immigrant kids being separated from their families at the border. During the two hour rally, representatives from the local immigrant community—like Unite Oregon Director Kayse Jama and Don't Shoot Portland leader Maria Garcia—led the audience in chants like "Abolish ICE!" and "Families Belong Together!" They also reminded the crowd that attending a protest isn't enough.
"Protests are great, but this fight doesn't stop here," said Jama. "We will remember this moment and we will get out and vote in November."
Oregon Senator Ron Wyden seemed to agree. "There is zero chance that we are going to stop speaking out against these injustices," he told the crowd.
Candidate for Portland City Council Jo Ann Hardesty shared concrete demands—like getting the city to withdraw its participation with the Joint Terrorism Task Force (JTTF), a program that (essentially) turns local officers into federal informants.
"I believe our Portland can stem the tide," said Hardesty. “If no other city in the country can stop this, Portland can."
After the rally, at least 200 of the protesters continued the march to Portland's regional Immigration and Customs Enforcement office on SW Macadam Ave, where they joined the group of protesters who've been camping out next to the facility for nearly two weeks.