May 1: 350,000 March in Los Angeles

350,00 People Hit the Streets--Demand Equality, Not Racism!

Hundreds of thousands marched
on May 1, 2010, Los Angeles
Photo: Associated Press

"Our struggle will not end until we win full legalization," said Juan Jose Gutierrez, leader of the Full Rights for Immigrants Coalition at a massive and historic march of over 350,000 people on May Day in Los Angeles.

Hundreds of thousands of people gathered and marched to demand immigrant rights and legalization on the biggest march in Los Angeles since the mass pro-immigrant marches in spring 2006.

The march stretched over 12 huge city blocks and was stationary for hours due to the throngs of people in downtown LA. Along with the main route on Olympic and Broadway, marchers packed the major parallel streets.

The march was organized by all the major immigrant rights groups and coalitions, and the main logistics provided by the Full Rights for Immigrants Coalition, of which the ANSWER Coalition, Vamos Unidos USA, Hermandad Mexicana Nacional, and the Laborers International Union of North America, among others are member groups. ANSWER also was on the Steering Committee of the May Day march in LA.

ANSWER leaders Carlos Alvarez and Ian Thompson spoke at the rally, along with Gutierrez, LA County Federation of Labor Executive Director, Maria Elena Durazo, and other labor and immigrant rights leaders. Other speakers included LA Mayor Antonio Villariagosa, Cardinal Roger Mahoney, Angelina Corona of Hermandad, and Julio Marroquin of LIUNA. LIUNA coordinated the march's security with special assistance from ANSWER.

The LAPD severely and consciously undercounted the march, estimating only 60,000 participants--a slap in the face to the hundreds of thousands of workers and families who attended. This number was picked up by English-language media, but it is a ridiculous lie. Villaragoisa was the first person to give a crowd estimate from the stage. His first words of were "I'm happy to be marching with over 250,000 people today." This was two hours before many tens of thousands of additional march participants even made it near the stage! 

ANSWER led a spirited contingent of hundreds, along with allies from the Party for Socialism and Liberation, the Alliance-Philippines, KmB Pro-People Youth and GABNet/Af3irm.

May Day in LA was a truly electric march that showed a new willingness to fight for just immigration reform, no criminalization and full equality for all. Click here for 200 more photos of the May Day March.

Stay involved with ANSWER's pro-immigrant work. And click here to attend a May 8 Socialism Conference hosted by ANSWER member group, the Party for Socialism and Liberation.

For more info call 213-251-1025 or email
[email protected]

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