NEW YORK - The New York Immigration Coalition (NYIC), MPower Change, and Strong Economy for All held a rally in Washington Square Park on Thursday evening against the U.S. Supreme Court’s stay on the Muslim Ban and the GOP Tax Bill, while urging Congress to pass a clean DREAM Act before the budget.
The rally began at Washington Square Park, followed by a march to 26 Federal Plaza. Hundreds of people gathered to stand up against President Trump’s regressive policies on immigrants and working people, and to demand action.
“Donald Trump has proudly pursued a cruel and rapacious agenda to the detriment of all Americans, while targeting Muslims, immigrants, and working people. The Muslim Ban, repealing DACA, and the Tax Scam will not make America greater or safer. Nearly a year after Trump’s inauguration, the resistance is stronger than ever and we will not allow Trump to turn bigotry into policy,” said Murad Awawdeh, Vice President of Advocacy at the New York Immigration Coalition.
“The GOP Tax Plan is a thinly veiled trillion dollar scheme to cut healthcare, destroy public schools, and raise taxes on poor, working class, and middle class families to pay for tax cuts for the ultra-wealthy. It hurts regular people to help billionaires. When you couple the plan with policies like the Muslim Ban and no DREAM Act, it is clear the GOP is engaged in an all-out assault on everyone that isn’t wealthy or white,” said Charles Khan, Organizing Director at Strong Economy For All Coalition.
"The Supreme Court has become complicit in the Trump war on The Constitution. The only thing America can rely on now is the power of the people to confront the movement towards American fascism head on– American-to-American and en masse. The National Action Network will continue to mobilize our communities to respond to the ongoing attacks that target the poor, people of color, immigrant communities, and our Muslim brothers & sisters,” said Minister Kirsten John Foy, Northeast Regional Director at National Action Network.
“The Trump Administration continues its strategic and targeted attacks on working and middle-class people,” said Jennifer Jones Austin, CEO and Executive Director at Federation of Protestant Welfare Agencies. “From its destructive and shortsighted tax bill, to the Muslim ban, to its repeal of the DACA executive order, there seems to be no limit to its intentional and harmful actions. What we’re witnessing is an all-out assault on diversity and American values of equity. We must come together and fight back, and be proactive in standing united against these divisive policies”
“As an undocumented immigrant, womxn of color, and a DREAMer, I can attest to the fact that this bill will determine the future of 11 million human lives. This bill is not just a policy. This bill is not an amnesty. This bill is about true American value, American history, humanity, and justice. Without a clean DREAM Act, nearly 800,000 young lives will be at risk of deportation and inhumanely be forced to walk away from the only home, the only life they know. In effect, it will also jeopardize the lives of 11 million undocumented families. No human being is illegal and every person deserves a chance to pursuit happiness and foster a better future for their children. Without a clean DREAM Act, My life will be in a limbo and I will be separated from my family,” said Angie Kim, Asian American DREAMERs Collective.
“We stand in solidarity with the New York Immigration Coalition, MPower Change, Strong Economy for All, and all our allies to fight against the latest attacks from the Trump administration. This week, the Supreme Court decided to allow the latest version of President Trump’s travel ban to take effect, barring individuals from a number of Muslim-majority countries from entering the U.S. Additionally, the U.S. Senate voted in favor of a tax bill last week that will devastate low-income and working class people with increased taxes, all the while protecting the country’s wealthiest with tax cuts. Time and again, the Trump administration has demonstrated their willingness to target our most vulnerable communities with their discriminatory policies. We continue to call for a dismantling of the Muslim ban and commit to mobilizing Asian communities in New York. We stand for a clean DREAM Act and urge our legislators to fight alongside us to ensure that our immigrant communities are given the opportunity to live out the lives they were promised in this country,” said Jo-Ann Yoo, Executive Director at Asian American Federation.
The NYIC has been leading the fight against the Muslim Ban since January when the first Executive Order came out, with the #NoBanJFK movement, and assisting travelers from over 20 countries and organizing hundreds of lawyers and volunteers. The protests at JFK sparked actions across the nation, including a rally held in Battery Park the next day, which drew over 30,000 people. In July, the NYIC was back out at JFK to monitor the situation and provide legal assistance if necessary. On September 24, the third iteration of the travel ban included Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Syria, Venezuela, Yemen, Somalia, six out of the eight countries are Muslim-majority nations. On October 17th, two federal judges issued temporary halts to the ban, but on December 4th, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down these injunctions to allow full enforcement of Trump’s Muslim Ban. Watch the documentary: “48 Hours of Resistance"
The Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act would serve as a permanent solution for those who currently qualify for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), including the 42,000 DACA recipients in New York whose status is at risk. Three months ago, President Trump rescinded DACA and the administration and congressional Republican leaders are attempting to make increased border protections (including “the Wall”) a condition of any future bill.
On November 16th, the U.S. House of Representatives passed their version of the tax reform bill that would drive up the federal deficit, open the door to massive cuts to Medicare and Medicaid, increase child poverty, repeal the individual mandate, make the rich richer, and favor corporations. On December 1st, the Senate passed the Tax Cut and Jobs Act, their version of the bill, which will cost $1.141 billion to the US economy over the next decade and kills local and state tax deductions.