By Sonai Perez
Spray paint and cardboards filled the front of Puente’s headquarters at Tonatierra this week. The Children’s March is getting closer and a small group of neighborhood kids came down on Thursday morning to finish their art projects and protest signs.
“This summer I really got involved with Puente”, said seventh grader Abríl Chihuahua, “I like coming because I get to help. I like painting and making posters for the protests”, she added.
The Children’s March will take place at the state capitol this Saturday, July 17 at 8 AM. It is intended to provide a voice for the children of immigrant families and allow them a space to march around the capitol and share their stories.
Some children will be reading their own testimonies about how they feel about SB1070 and how they are directly affected by it.
“We hope to bring more than 100 kids to the capitol this weekend, there will be many activities like a piñata and face painting”, said Puente volunteer Luissana Santibanez.
A notary public will also be available free of charge so parents can arrange a power of attorney for a worst case scenario. If a parent becomes detained, this letter can help transfer the custody of their children or property to a close friend or relative.
“Given that there is no reform, there are a lot of people at risk of being detained, especially now that the police will have a new authority to fill. So, we encourage people to be prepared”, said Santibanez.
“My children worry about their future and don’t want the new law to pass,” said Estefania Bernal, who came by to help make signs with her children Javier, Elizabeth and Lydia.
“I tell them that when we come together we become stronger, and we can accomplish many things”.
Puente Arizona and members from the barrio committees will gather July 17 at 8 AM at the capitol to hear the stories of children, followed by a march.
From 6 to 9 PM there will be a community potluck at the capitol located on 17th Avenue and Washington Street.
For more information contact the local Puente Arizona office at 602.314.5870