San Diego

Activists Use Indigenous Performance Art to Protest Immigration Policies

Activists say the protest was meant to highlight the pain of families separated at the border

Chanting indigenous prayers, dozens of people protested the Trump Administration’s immigration policies on Saturday morning, outside the Federal Building in downtown San Diego.

Activists say the performance art protest was meant to highlight the pain of families separated at the border.

“This is just a way to get Western culture to understand that we are hurting. We’ve been hurting,” immigrant-rights activist Stephany Rubio said. 

The demonstration happened next to the Edward J. Schwartz Federal Office Building, where many court decisions have recently been made regarding migrant children. While the government has made progress is reuniting families, many activists say the government isn’t doing nearly enough.

“There are still 211 children that remain separated from their parents. Many of them will not be able to reunify with their parents, and that’s a travesty,” American Friends Service Committee director Pedro Rios said.

This week the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services revealed that 12,800 migrant children are in its custody — the highest number ever recorded.

While many of President Trump’s supporters stand behind his tough on immigration policies, the detention of children continues to spark public outcry.

“We have to make a call out to say maybe it’s time to abolish ICE," Rios said. "Maybe it’s time to take a bigger step to how we want our society to reflect much more dignified principles.” 

In a statement to NBC 7, Immigration and Customs Enforcement said it "fully respects the rights of all people to voice their opinion peacefully without interference.”

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