At Trump protest, Austin mayor vows to keep immigrant families safe


12:00 p.m. update: Austin Mayor Steve Adler and Council Member Greg Casar said they would fight to protect undocumented residents in the city at a rally Sunday protesting Donald Trump’s immigration policies.

From a podium in front of City Hall, Casar vowed he will fight to ensure that no Austin city employee or police officer will do anything to tear immigrant families apart.

“We are here as a city to take care of one another,” he said. “This is the beginning of the new organized resistance against Trump.”

Sunday’s event was the third protest in the city since Wednesday opposing the new president-elect. Hundreds in the crowd, including many undocumented immigrants, shared stories from a podium, many in tears.

Elizabeth Ramirez, clutching her newborn daughter, said in Spanish she feared for her undocumented family. She thanked the organizers for creating a safe space to speak out.

Casar said Austin would join with other U.S. cities to oppose Trump’s 100-day plan that threatens sanctuary cities, or ones with policies that protect immigrant communities. He said Austin would also resist taxes on health care and calls to register people based on faith.

“In Austin, Texas, we build bridges and not walls,” Adler said. “Nothing that happened this week changes who we are as a community, our values or our culture.”

Adler said he respected the office of the presidency as fundamental to democracy and was willing to work with Trump.

“But at the same time we will remain vigilant and prepared,” he said. “We know what it’s like to be challenged in Austin for who we are, for keeping Austin weird.

“In Austin, we do things our way, and we will not stop,” he added.

Many in the crowd chanted “Stand up, fight back,” before marching from City Hall to the state Capitol.

11:45 a.m. update: Austin police have closed Congress Avenue from Cesar Chavez to the state Capitol as protesters march in opposition to Trump’s immigration policies.

11:15 a.m. update: Austin police are closing Cesar Chavez Street so the demonstrators can march to the state Capitol.

During the rally, City Council Member Greg Casar told the crowd that he will fight to ensure that no Austin city employee or police officer will do anything to tear immigrant families apart.

Earlier: A group of undocumented immigrant families have organized a rally at Austin City Hall on Sunday morning to protest President-elect Donald Trump’s immigration policies.

Beginning at 10 a.m., residents who say they could be directly affected by the president-elect’s policies will take to the podium to share their stories. At 10:35 a.m. Austin Mayor Steve Adler will provide remarks. Council Member Greg Casar is slated to speak shortly after.

By 9 a.m., many had already begun gathering outside City Hall donning white shirts that read “Don’t mess with Texas families.” By 9:45 a.m., hundreds of people had arrived.

For Cristina Tzinzún, Sunday’s rally is about the future of her family. Six months pregnant and the wife of an undocumented immigrant from Mexico, Tzinzún says she fears for the future of her family.

“This is a really frightening, terrifying moment in our family. I don’t know that I can promise my son or reassure him that I or his father will always be here for him,” she said outside City Hall. “I am going to give birth the month takes office. I know that my son is going to be coming into a world where he is consistently told he is less than.”

It was this feeling that spurred Tzinzún to help plan Sunday’s event.

”I was tired of crying at home for two days and knew that I wasn’t the only one,” she said. “There are millions of people like me. There are millions of courageous and good people across this country that don’t want to see families ripped apart.”

It is the third protest against Trump’s election in the city since Wednesday. A fourth event is planned Sunday night at the Texas Capitol at 7:30 p.m.


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