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Protesters to gather Friday night against migrant detention centers

Posted at 9:56 AM, Jul 12, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-12 11:56:23-04

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    Kansas City, MO (KCTV ) — Protesters from across the metro are expected to gather Friday night at Washington Square Park to stand in solidarity with the migrant community.

The event’s purpose is to speak out against conditions in migrant detention centers along the southern border. Organizers for lights For Liberty say they are also focusing on educating people about what Kansas City immigrants are facing.

“We have witnessed the sick and elderly confined to ‘icebox’ rooms for weeks at a time,” the organizer says on the event’s website. “Unbelievably, children as young as four months are taken from their parents, medicine is confiscated, and medical care withheld, and LGBTQ and disabled individuals are held in solitary confinement.”

The organization is holding several other national protests across the country with the same goal. The biggest protests are planned in El Paso, Texas, Homestead, Florida, and San Diego.

As far as the Kansas City metro, event speakers will discuss what they say are ICE raids happening in the metro and how local families are being separated by deportation or detention.

“There’s increased ICE activity, raids of restaurants, raids of workplaces, raids neighborhoods,” said Rev. Rick Behrens of the Grandview Park Presbyterian Church. “They’re going to a neighborhood looking for one person, and they’ll sweep up whoever else they can find who can’t provide identification and whatever means.”

Grandview Park Presbyterian Church is in Kansas City, Kansas, where an estimated 11,000 to 15,000 undocumented immigrants live.

ICE has mostly been silent in the face of the criticism, but President Donald Trump has spoken up in recent days, commending Border Patrol and ICE officers while downplaying the complaints.

“Our Border Patrol people are not hospital workers, doctors or nurses,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “Great job by Border Patrol, above and beyond. Many of these illegal aliens are living far better now than where they…came from, and in far safer conditions.”

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