SAN ANTONIO-- An undocumented worker who defied a federal order to deport her and sought sanctuary in a Chicago church for almost a year in 2006 marched to City Hall Wednesday afternoon.
She and other activists will urge council to pass a resolution to protect illegal immigrants in San Antonio.They want to see San Antonio become a so-called Sanctuary City such as El Paso, where neither police nor city employees are permitted to inquire about a person s immigration status.
Demonstrators in San Antonio called for comprehensive immigration reform and a ban on deportations which separate American-born children from their parents.
In 2006, Elvira Arellano was detained in an immigration sting. She was using fake credentials to work at O'Hare International Airport.
The single mother took refuge at a church in Chicago with her U.S.-born son, Saul. He's now 15 and in high school in Illinois.
Wednesday, Arrellano spoke at the Cesar E. Chavez Center with her 6-month-old son Emiliano who was born in Mexico.She said she's still fighting to be reunited with her American-born son.
She's being compared to Rosa Parks, saidJaime Martinez with the Cesar Chavez Center. And we're petitioning the President to have relief for these families also.
The labor council for Latin American advancement estimates 5 million American children under the age of 18 have at least one undocumented parents. It says too often these families are ripped apart unnecessarily.
If we have a raid in a factory and we have people that are paying their mortgages and paying their houses and these people are just taken away and their American citizen families are left behind who's going to put bread on the table these are questions that don't just affect that family they affect all of us.
In 2011, Governor Rick Perry proposed legislation to ban sanctuary cities in the state.
Public hearings were held, but the bill collapsed after Hispanic lawmakers said it would lead to racial profiling.
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