HOMESTEAD (CBSMiami) – Dozens gathered in front of Homestead City Hall to protest President Donald Trump’s immigration policies.
“This march is to protest against what’s going on with immigrants. To protest against what President Trump is doing with our people – deporting them, some of them without a cause,” protester Guadalupe Arciniega said.
Similar scenes took place around the nation in placed like Chicago, D.C. and North Carolina.
Protesters took part in the so-called “Day Without Immigrants” that saw people ditching work and school to show how their absence would affect the US economy and way of life.
“We, today, didn’t go to work nor we cooperated with the system in consuming,” Margarito Cruz said. “Today we demonstrated our power by gathering.”
Ana Saucedo held a sign that read “Immigrants Make America Great” – a play on the president’s campaign slogan.
“I just want to show that without us, there’s a major change in our world because immigrants are what make America,” she said. “So without us, there is no America.”
Protesters at the march in Homestead say they plan to gather tomorrow at Government Center where a special commission meeting is set to take place regarding Mayor Gimenez’s recent decision to hold arrested immigrants when asked by Immigration and Customers Enforcement.
“I think the protesters are actually people that believe that we did a lot more than what we did. We did a minor change saying that the federal government doesn’t have to agree to pay for us to hold a retainer for 48 hours,” Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez said.
The mayor says it’s a policy that was in place from 2008 to 2014 and he told CBS4’s Jim Defede on “Facing South Florida” the reason for the change now came down to money.
President Trump threatened to take away federal money from sanctuary cities.
“At that time, we didn’t think we were in violation of federal law,” he said. “We’re at risk of losing millions of dollars and I do not want to put Miami-Dade County as a ‘sanctuary city,’ which we have never claimed to be a ‘sanctuary city’ and put us at risk.”