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Opponents of SB 1070 plan 'Day of Action'
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Opponents of SB 1070 plan 'Day of Action'

  • Isabel Garcia speaks at a press conference on Tuesday.
    Curtis Prendergast/TucsonSentinel.comIsabel Garcia speaks at a press conference on Tuesday.
  • Paseo Aguirre inspects a sign used to rally opponents of SB 1070.
    Curtis Prendergast/TucsonSentinel.comPaseo Aguirre inspects a sign used to rally opponents of SB 1070.
  • Francisco Baires speaks at a press conference on Tuesday.
    Curtis Prendergast/TucsonSentinel.comFrancisco Baires speaks at a press conference on Tuesday.

Opponents of SB 1070 are planning a day of action July 28-29 under the slogan "Don't Work, Don't Buy, Don't Comply."

Representatives of a coalition of groups gathered on the corner of Granada Avenue and Congress Street, in front of the Arizona State Office Building, to announce a statewide mobilization to protest SB 1070.

"We are calling our communities to action," Rev. Alison J. Harrington of Southside Presbyterian Church said to the crowd of a few dozen. 

The church will hold a prayer vigil at El Presidio Park beginning at 11:30 p.m. on July 28, lasting until the following morning. 

Speakers at the press conference said that other events to protest SB 1070 will include rallies and acts of civil disobedience on July 29, the day the law is set to take effect.

"We are standing in solidarity with 19 local organizations in town and a dozen more in the state," said Paseo Aguirre of No More Deaths.  "We encourage a general strike."

Several speakers put the new law in historical context. 

Anti-immigrant sentiment in Tucson "has been felt for a decade, two decades, but not with the intensity of the past few months," said Isabel Garcia, Pima County Legal Defender and co-chair of the Coalicion de Derechos Humanos.  "In the mid-1990s we knew that SB 1070 was coming."

"SB 1070 has taken us to another level," said Garcia.

This law is the most recent part of a long history of colonization and repression, said Raul Alcaraz, a local immigrant rights activist. "Stop the militarization of the border.  That is what is illegal, not us," said Alcaraz.

Monica Carrasco of the Indigenous Alliance Without Borders stressed the negative effects that 1070 could have on local indigenous people, especially in the context of recent border militarization.  "If they were here before anyone, why should they have to show papers? It's rude."

In addition to human rights groups, students from the UA have mobilized to protest SB 1070. "We do not want to go to a college that is cozy with racism," said Francisco Baires of UAgainst SB1070. "We want [UA president] Shelton to declare the UA a 'racist-free zone.'"

Curtis Prendergast also writes for The Sonoran Chronicle.

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