The Austin protest was organized by Austinites Crystal Bird Caviel and Randi Jones Hensley. Local immigrant and advocacy groups provided speakers, including the Southwest Region Nation of Islam, who’s Director, Robert Muhammad, provided the closing speech.
“We could not provide protection for their women and their children and we could not even guarantee that their children would be present with them in their adolescent years,” Muhammad said, referring to children being transferred to other facilities.
Other speakers at the rally were from the nonprofit Grassroots Leadership, UndocuBlack Network and Girasol. Casa Marianella, YWCA Austin and Democratic Socialists of America also had tables at the event.
Organizers say donations collected at the rally will go to Girasol, which supports immigrants both during and after they’ve been detained. The organization is housed in the Texas Institute for Child and Family Wellbeing at the University of Texas at Austin.