Organized by labor unions and civil rights groups, May Day rallies challenging President Trump’s immigration and deportation policies took place Monday across the United States, with the largest demonstrations expected late in the day.
The aim of activists was to attract the largest crowds that have demonstrated for so-called U.S. immigrant-rights since Trump was inaugurated.
Midtown Manhattan saw 500 protesters marching early in the day and rallying in front of Wells Fargo and JPMorgan Chase & Co. According to a spokesperson for Make the Road New York, an immigrant advocacy group, 12 participants were arrested.
Jose Lopez, co-director of organizing for the group, said that the two banks were selected due to their dealings with private companies that have constructed or manage immigrant detention centers for the government.
“The messaging for today was to stop financing immigrant detention facilities,” said Lopez. “This is going to be the first of many attacks against these corporations who, until they stop working with this administration, will continue to be on our target list.”
It got violent in Portland, Oregon:
In Los Angeles, the mayor declared he is the “grandson of a dreamer who came here from Mexico” and vowed he will defend immigrants’ rights.
— Jane Sander (@Jane_Sander) May 1, 2017
— Liam Dillon (@dillonliam) May 1, 2017
The current May Day scene at NYC’s Union Square. pic.twitter.com/txeMfW14ZI
— Julia Carmel (@JuliaCarmel__) May 1, 2017
— Indivisible Guide (@IndivisibleTeam) May 1, 2017
— Fight for $15 LA (@Fightfor15LA) May 1, 2017
Tens of thousands of immigrant families and allies to rally today in May Day marches https://t.co/jWxqLGNriJ
— Mark Ruffalo (@MarkRuffalo) May 1, 2017
May Day, also known as International Workers’ Day, has historically seen fewer protests in the United States than in Europe, where it is celebrated as a public holiday in many countries.
On Monday, May Day demonstrators clashed with police in France and Turkey. In France, at least three Paris officers were injured by Molotov cocktails and other projectiles thrown by protestors. Police in Istanbul resorted to firing tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse demonstrators as authorities arrested more than 150 people.
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Restaurant employees sing insulting song to police as officers eat