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May Day rally held in downtown Los Angeles

Thousands of people arrived in downtown Los Angeles on Thursday for the annual May Day marches supporting immigrant rights.
May 1, 2014 7:29:33 AM PDT
Thousands of people arrived in downtown Los Angeles on Thursday for the annual May Day marches supporting immigrant rights.

This year's march is themed, "Keeping families together," emphasizing the goal of ending deportations that split parents from their children. Other issues brought forward included increasing the federal minimum wage and immigrant worker rights.

"It's the day that we remind the American public and the government that there's a great debt to our community," said Angelica Salas, executive director of Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles. "We work hard in every single industry, yet we don't have the recognition or the respect that we deserve."

"On this May Day, we want to emphasize that we're all one group of working people just trying to do better for our families," said Maria Elena Durazo, executive secretary-treasurer of the L.A. County Federation of Labor.

"By coming here today and really showing power in numbers, we're able to say to our legislators and our decision-makers that we want change," said L.A. resident Nathaniel Lowe

Some participants called on the Obama Administration to curb the record numbers of deportations that have occurred during his presidency.

"In the Thai community, up to 50 percent are undocumented and living in fear in Los Angeles," said Panida Rzonca, an attorney with the Thai Community Development Center.

Three marches and rallies were scheduled in downtown. One of the marches began at Chinatown Gateway, winded through the downtown area and ended at the Metropolitan Detention Center at North Alameda Street, where a rally was held.

Several streets are expected to be closed until as late as 7 p.m., including: Broadway between 11th and Ord streets, Aliso Street between Broadway and Alameda Street and Alameda Street between Cesar Chavez Avenue and Temple Street.


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