Immigrant activists and their supporters declared this past Thursday #adaywithoutimmigrants. Immigrants were asked not to attend work, or school, and not to shop or contribute to the economy in any way.
The effort was to demonstrate the economic value immigrants bring to the community. While we know that immigrants are worth more than the economic value they bring, this effort was meant to highlight to all Americans that immigrants are an integral part of this society. They are the underbelly of many industries.
According to the Restaurant Opportunities Centers United immigrants make up the majority of the 12 million workers in the restaurant industry and up to 70% of those employed in cities like New York and Chicago. Restaurants across the country in major cities closed as demonstration of solidarity.
Children of immigrants also participated in an act of solidarity by not purchasing items, not attending work, and keeping our children from school.
The resistance will take many forms.
A National Women’s Strike has been announced for March 8th.
A classroom in Los Angeles was empty as a result of the strike
Photo via Twitter @estradashares
A girl looks at a closed store in Salinas, California
(David Royal/ Monterrey Herald)
A McDonald’s closed due to lack of employee attendance
Photo via Twitter @edusamani