Day Of Resistance March For Families Draws Hundreds In Bloomington | WGLT

Day Of Resistance March For Families Draws Hundreds In Bloomington

May 2, 2017

Hundreds of demonstrators marched from the old courthouse building to Bloomington City hall singing and chanting.

"Ice in our drinks but nowhere else," and "Immigrants are welcome here. No hate. No fear," they called out.

Illinois People's Action, Black Lives Matter, numerous churches, the YWCA, and the Not In Our Town organization were among the groups taking part.

They are asking the city council for a Welcoming Cities Ordinance. They oppose the Trump administration stance on immigration. A welcoming cities ordinance would commit Bloomington to avoid working to support Immigrations and Customs Enforcement or ICE.

Dontae Latson used the words of Martin Luther King in framing it as an absolute and not a relative good, to fight to keep immigrant families together.

"The hottest place in hell is reserved for those who remain neutral in times of great moral conflict," said Latson.

Retired priest Father Doug Hennessy quoted Peter's speech to the Sanhedrin in the Acts of the Apostles book of the bible saying "we must obey God rather than men."

Hennessy said now may be that kind of time again.

"This current immigration system is not of God. God's word tells us every person without exception has inherent human dignity and is worthy of respect, that families are meant to be together," said Hennessy.

Alderman Scott Black had just been sworn into office for his second term when the marchers reached City Hall. Black said he thinks such an ordinance will come to a vote.

"I think we can find ways to make sure people feel welcomed in our community. Ward 7 has the highest immigrant population among all the wards. We want to make sure people feel welcome. As an Alderman  I want to protect that right," said Black.

New Alderman Jamie Mathy watched the demonstration and said he believes the city council will end up voting on such a proposal...

I think it's definitely going to happen. I think it's going to come forward. We just need to see what's in it and go through the specifics of it," said Mathy.

Black said he thinks that ordinance is a good idea. Mathy said the devil is in the details.