Via The Real Cost of Prisons Blog:
Marchers on 3-day, 31-mile walk to protest immigration prison
By Lauren FitzPatrick
April 1, 2012 2:32AM
Manning a megaphone, Angela Marrufo led the chanting.
“What do we want?” the 8-year-old shouted in English and Spanish to the dozens who followed down Western Avenue from 111th Street to about 123rd. “When do we want it?”
“Justice,” the protesters answered. And “now,” they said.
Marrufo, with her mom, were among the group of 40 people walking from the South Side to Chicago Heights Saturday in protest of a proposed new federal immigration detention center. Immigration Control and Enforcement (ICE) wants to build in south suburban Crete the prison that would hold some 700-800 immigrants being deported.
In eye-grabbing neon green T-shirts, the group covered about 20 miles of the 31-mile, three-day trek, on foot, aiming to arrive Sunday in Crete, where the mayor supports the prison as economic development for his town.
Some Crete residents have complained of a lack of transparency in the planning process, however. And last week, the Illinois Senate overwhelmingly passed legislation specifically to prevent a private company from building the detention centers.
“We are going to stop this jail,” asserted the Rev. Jose Landaverde of Our Lady of Guadalupe Mission in Little Village, one of the march organizers. “Instead of building prisons, they should be building schools.”
On Friday, the protesters had walked 7½ miles from Little Village to 81st and California, sleeping at St. Thomas More parish. Saturday, they headed south on Western, following the same stretch through Beverly that the South Side Irish parade takes, and through the historic swath of downtown Blue Island. That’s where bartender Michael P. Kennedy stuck his head of out of a bar to shout, “Border patrol! Border patrol!”
Kennedy said his son is a border agent in San Diego and said he’s frustrated about illegal immigrants breaching national borders and believes in consequences for breaking laws.