On Saturday, August 31, 2013, a rally organized by the local Immigration Forum took place at West Side Park in Champaign. Some 300 people attended in the 90 degree heat. The rally was aimed at swinging the vote of Rodney Davis, a Republican in the House of Representatives. While Davis was not present at the rally, many Democratic Party representatives were, including Senator Dick Durbin. Below are some photos from the event.
Tom Garza, of the Immigration Forum, speaks.
Ha Ho, of the East Central Illinois Refugee & Mutual Assistance Center, addressed the crowd.
Also there was Mauricio Salinas, owner of El Oasis, a new Mexican ice cream store in Urbana.
Senator Dick Durbin received enthusiastic applause.
A highlight of the rally was a speech given by a “Dreamer,” Lucia Cruz, who lives in Champaign. She was brought to the United States at the age of 13 with her two siblings. Her mother had died in Mexico, and she moved to be with her father who was living in the U.S. She graduated from high school in Grand Rapids, Michigan with honors. After high school she struggled, as she couldn’t go to college because of her immigration status. She watched her classmates go to school while she was left uncertain of her future. “As I went through my situation,” she said, “I realized I was not the only one.” She kindly asked Congressman Davis to support Comprehensive Immigration Reform with a pathway to citizenship for the 11 million people living here.