LA Walkout for DACA


Gerardo Hernandez

Members of the Los Angeles community gathered around to show their support for DACA.

Gerardo Hernandez , Reporter

Hundreds of students in the LA Unified school district participated in the Rise For DACA walkout rally. The event occurred on Tuesday, November 12 at MacArthur Park to demonstrate the impact of undocumented immigrants in our society.

Surprising Result

Kathia Garcia, the Lead Youth Organizer, had been preparing for today’s walkouts with L.A. Unified’s high school students since August. “We were expecting around 400 students- because those were the logistics that we had predetermined in our planning,” said Garcia.”But, when the time came, we had over 600 students walk out.”

Overwhelmed by the turn out, Garcia and her fellow organizers had to order more food to ensure that all attendees received a lunch. “The goal was to take up as much space in the streets as possible to send the message to the Supreme Court that they need to reestablish the full benefits of the DACA Program for the students and community,” said Garcia.”This isn’t only for the scholars; it’s for the parents of Dreamers, los tios, los abuelos, their undocumented friends – we all know someone who will be affected as a direct result of the decision in Washington.”

Gerardo Hernandez
Kevin Cruz’s “Rise For DACA” poster on display at the walkout rally that culminated in several speakers sharing their personal stories at MacArthur Park in Los Angeles

The Goal

Among the most pertinent ideals promoted today was the notion that the DACA program is not simply a matter of honoring the promises made to the undocumented students by the previous administration, but restoring peace in the minds of the vast undocumented community throughout the Greater Los Angeles area. Volunteer artist, Kevin Cruz, spoke about his role in today’s rally. Upon the student’s requests, Cruz was called upon to aid in the making of “Rise For DACA” posters.

As a former student of the L.A. Unified school district, Cruz felt honored to be personally chosen to assist in the protest. “Although the person whose face we used in the posters prefers to remain anonymous, they did feel comfortable sharing that they are a former DACA beneficiary,” explains Kevin. “This place is my home. For example, I grew up playing soccer at this park so I felt inclined to have the face of my posters be friends and associates who are directly involved with DACA.”

Gerardo Hernandez
Students displayed protest art throughout the city in preparation for today’s events to demonstrate solidarity with undocumented immigrants.

Los Angeles United

Community leaders want to get the point across that the documented Angeleno community will stand in solidarity with their undocumented friends and neighbors. The DACA Program affects Los Angeles as a whole. Cruz noted this as his favorite success of the day’s event:

“Allowing the community to have a space to feel good and comfortable amidst troubling times for the Latino population was really great. Just seeing everyone coming together and noticing the strength in numbers that we could produce was rewarding.”

Also noteworthy was District Representative Gil Sevilla stepping to the stage to thank the attendees for “keeping the promise of democracy alive.” From three to eight o’clock in the afternoon, the Latino community came together to demonstrate that they are ready for action and prepared for what’s to come. “Here is Home. Home is Here” rung all through the afternoon.