A bill for an act prohibiting the state, counties, cities, and certain postsecondary educational institutions from limiting or restricting enforcement of federal immigration laws (Formerly HSB 67.) has been introduced to the legislature and is pending a date for vote in Iowa during this legislative session.
Over 1,000 Iowans, majority of which were of Latino decent, marched at the Iowa State Capitol from La Placita, a hub of Latino businesses in Des Moines, Iowa to show their efforts to fight this bill and anti-immigrant and anti-Latino sentiment that has manifested itself across the state since the beginning of the election cycle in 2015.
Des Moines currently is home to over 24,000 Latinos, many of which felt that they could not attend the rally today. “I am still undocumented and I want to be able to support my community and be strong for my children but I do not feel safe being in public, I feel like we are a huge target,” a Des Moines Latino resident tells Hola Iowa.
For those that were able to attend, the reasons varied, and so did their hopefulness for the future. “I am here to stand in solidarity for immigrant’s rights. This country reaps a lot of benefits from immigrants and needs to treat them equally,” says Joaquin Flores, student at Drake Law School in Des Moines, IA.