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Between February 28th and March 3rd, Make the Road Nevada visited Washington D.C. to take part in two rallies and to speak with Senator Catherine Cortez Masto’s and Representative Steven Horsford’s teams on immigration reform. Five MRNV members joined Rico Ocampo (Immigrant Justice Organizer), Itzel Hernandez (Health Equity Organizer), and Crystal Lugo (Digital Organizer) on the four-day trip, which began with the State of Our Lives rally on Monday. 

Hundreds united outside the White House on the eve of President Biden’s State of the Union Address, demanding Biden to keep his pre-presidential promises on immigration reform. Speakers across various organizations expressed their frustrations with the unkept promises—all feeling collectively cheated and disillusioned by the president.  The attendees urged the 46th president to grant citizenship to the 11 million undocumented people in the United States, and also demanded him to deliver solutions on healthcare and climate matters.

 

“Biden, shine light on those who have been forced into the shadows; shine light on our people and give us a permanent solution: citizenship,” shared MRNV member leader, Areli. 

“Biden, act on what we put you in office for,” shared Northern Nevada MRNV member leader, Edurne. 

On Wednesday, March 2nd, MRNV staff and members met with Senator Catherine Cortez Masto’s team to discuss her stance on immigration reform and ask for her support. MRNV members, Jose, Ben, and Amparo shared their stories with the senator’s team for the first time. MRNV member and Nevada teacher, Ben joined MRNV in alliance after witnessing his undocumented students struggle internally and externally due to their undocumented status. 

“School is already stressful enough,” shared Ben with the senator’s team. “Being undocumented in this country adds unnecessary stress onto them.” 

MRNV member leader and DACA recipient, Jose shared his story with Cortez Masto’s team and explained his disappointment over not feeling fully accepted by the only country he has ever called home. 

“I’m tired of living a temporary life,” said Jose. “I’m not asking for a handout—all I’m asking for is a pathway to citizenship.” 

MRNV member, Amparo shared her story about being an undocumented mother of three, circled by limitations and little-to-no support from the United States due to her status. 

“I’m here in front of you expressing my stress,” shared Amparo. “I’m asking you to listen to us and put your hand on your hearts—be in community with us.”

On March 3rd, MRNV joined organizations outside the ICE building for the Communities Not Cages rally. The attendees chanted for change—calling Biden out on his adoption of Trump-era anti-immigration policies and demanding for ICE and CBP to be defunded, for detention centers to be shut down, for people to be freed, and for deportations to be stopped. 

MRNV safely returned to Nevada on Thursday night, bringing back new experiences and a stronger fight with them. Thank you for visiting, team! 

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Thank you, Senator Catherine Cortez Masto’s staff and Representative Steven Horsford’s staff, for speaking to our Nevada members and centering their voices.

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Missed our Washington D.C. trip? Check us out on our Twitter @maketheroadnv to view our Washington tweets, and visit our Instagram @maketheroadnv to view our Washington story highlight!

 

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How far have you gone to protect your family? How far would you travel? Who would you face to ensure that your children could spend another day with you?

Well, our gente has traveled miles. They have faced police and entire administrations to defend themselves and to fight for their neighbors. They have braved an entire country that criminalizes and dehumanizes them and their experiences to provide for their families on a daily basis. After so long, they continue. They continue to fight. They continue to raise their voices. They refuse to be defeated. 

This week the Parliamentarian ruled against creating a pathway to citizenship. With this ruling folks all over the political process believe that the fight for citizenship is over, but our gente does not take no for an answer. Our gente is taking to the streets of DC this week to welcome back congress after their recess. Their welcome consists of marches outside the capitol and around DC. Chants are ricocheting from the walls and windows of the capital city because our people can’t wait another year.  Our people are uniting across the country to fight for each other. To fight for security. To fight for their right to live a life of dignity and with respect. 

From Nevada, Rico, Lalo, Areli, and Marvin are joining their voices to the call for our elected officials to develop a new plan in which millions of people in the states have a path to citizenship.

Rico, a DACA recipient, a father, a husband, a friend, has dedicated his life to the cause, to organizing his community into participating in the political process to ensure that the political process truly reflects the interests of the people.

Lalo, a DACA recipient, a father, a friend, a partner, works day in and day out to ensure that his community has access to fair housing conditions and is treated fairly by their landlords while also fighting to educate the community on their rights.

Arieli, a mother, a partner, an immigrant, came to the states in search of safety. Her search for safety led her to a space where she can use her story and her voice to educate others and to advocate for a more inclusive and more secure future for everyone in her community.

Marvin, a friend, a son, an advocate, has used his voice in school board meetings and in demonstrations to advocate for the rights of students and their families. 

These powerful, educated, passionate voices are marching, demonstrating, and like Rep. John Lewis said, ‘getting into good trouble’ in DC. Their voices, their strength is a direct result of the support of the community. Nevada has a very large Latinx population and with that collective strength, they march on. From Nevada, we wish them peace, protection, and good vibes as they march for our rights. In Nevada, we will be cheering them on as they make history during Latinx Heritage Month. El Pueblo Unido Jamas Sera Vencido! Si Se Puede!

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