Women undergo mass arrests to demand up-or-down vote on fair immigration reform


by Félix Pérez/image above courtesy of Reform Immigration for America

Years ago, when Rocío Inclán was a classroom teacher in Arizona striving to give her students the best educational opportunities she could, she did not imagine that her commitment would lead to her arrest. That all changed this morning when Inclán and dozens of women were arrested in the shadow of the U.S. Capitol after engaging in a mass act of civil disobedience.

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Inclán, director of NEA’s Human and Civil Rights department, joined more than 100 women to demand that the U.S. House of Representatives act on comprehensive immigration reform and recognize that women and children are at the heart of the immigration debate.

Said Inclán in a statement:

Today, I stood up because as an educator I have a moral responsibility to speak up for our students, their families and for educators. If not now, when? If not us, mothers, daughters, and educators, then who? We cannot build a prosperous country with a strong public education system when children and families do not know what tomorrow will bring.”

Inclán does not view what she did today as an act of bravery. “Courage to me is those educators and families who get up every day, roll up their sleeves and go to work and school in spite of this burden to seek the American dream and build a better country.”

According to organizers of today’s event, women and children account for three-quarters of all immigrants to the United States.

Inclán being led away after arrest./image by Sewell Johnson
Inclán being led away./image by Sewell B. Johnson

The immigration reform debate has stalled in the House. DREAMers, their families, educators, religious, business and labor leaders — Republicans, Democrats and Independents — are demanding that House Speaker John Boehner allow an up-or-down vote on a bill that includes a pathway to citizenship. The Senate has passed a comprehensive immigration bill.

This morning’s civil disobedience included moms, daughters, grandmothers and aspiring Americans.

“I was incredibly nervous and was attacked by some momentary doubts — what will my sister say?” said Inclán. “What will my former school colleagues think? But women take risks every day to contribute to the well-being and success of our families and loved ones.”

Reader Comments

  1. I am so very proud of you Rocío, taking action when action is needed. Peaceful demonstrations may be the only means left to bring the U.S. Representatives to bring civility to the US. Emigration policy. Thank you,

  2. To Grubb
    It was once illegal in this country to run away from your slave master. With moral issues relating to human beings everything moral and just should come to the table.

    1. To Rob, Mexico didn’t seem very interested in helping the slaves in the 1860’s.They were probably weary after years of war trying to claim Texas. If there are moral issues in Mexico fine, 12 to 18 million aliens and a few “Educators” should protest down there. Law enforcement has enough to do without teachers protesting in the streets.

  3. Wow, isn’t this a great way to show our students respect for the country, our flag, and the law, way to go educators.

  4. Well said Mr Grubb, the Mexican Govt claims it will take back California without firing a shot. Of course we won’t have the guns to stop them anyway. No country or Government in the world who stand for this invasion. Why is NEA supporting it.?

  5. Those woman deserved to be arrested. They broke the law.

    In addition, they are demonstrating against our current immigration system, which works perfectly fine. Why would I say this?

    Because, my wife come from Thailand. She immigrated here LEGALLY. She and I filled out the U.S. Immigration paperwork, PAID the fees, and waited two years for her K-3 Visa to be approved. Then she received her green card in the mail.

    Anyone who supports illegal behavior does not have good ethical character or morality. They cannot distinguish between right and wrong.

    Amnesty is basically changing the rules to support illegal aliens breaking the law. Our immigration system in the U.S is NOT broke.

    We need to fix our borders, adequately fund our border patrol, and arrest and deport ALL illegal aliens from this country (11 million +)… Period.

    And, if Education Votes, NEA, or CTA support Amnesty or any immigration reform that grants illegal aliens citizenship by initially breaking the U.S. by illegal immigrating into this country…then those employees need to be removed from their positions…Period.

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