Carrying signs reading “Immigration reform now,” “Stop separating families,” “No ban, no wall, no raids” and “Resist, rise up,” thousands of marchers walked from Walker’s Point to the Milwaukee County Courthouse.
Sheriff David Clarke was a target of the marchers. “Indict and convict Sheriff Clarke,” read one large sign.
“We’re marching to celebrate local sanctuary victories, demand that Gov. [Scott] Walker remove Sheriff [David] Clarke from office, and to demand Clarke face criminal charges for his responsibility for the deaths in the jail and abuses of power,” said Christine Neumann-Ortiz, executive director of Voces de la Frontera.
Buses from a dozen cities across the state carried people to the march, which was part of a national day of action for immigrant and worker rights. Organizers called for workers to strike and children to be withdrawn from school for the march.
According to Neumann-Ortiz, Milwaukee is the epicenter of the fight against 287(g), which deputizes local law enforcement officers to interview, arrest and detain individuals who they think are violating immigration laws. She accused the Trump administration of a “campaign of state terror against immigrant families and people of color.”
May 1, which is typically a day for union members to march for workers’ rights, has been a focal point for immigrant rights demonstrations in recent years.