On Tuesday, May Day, over a dozen separate protests, rallies and marches are set to bubble up around Los Angeles. Many parts of the city will be taken over by protesters who want to draw attention to the state of immigrant rights — and workers’ rights, unemployment, homelessness, and more.
The immigrant-rights march through downtown L.A. has gone down on May Day since at least 2006, but this year there will be an expected dozen or more protests and rallies from four different quadrants of the city.
Aside from the usual immigrant and labor rights coalitions (made up of the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles, the AFL-CIO and some smaller immigrant rights groups) there will also be a large Occupy contingency, which is calling for several "caravans" and a general, citywide strike.
Tony Bernabe is a senior organizer with CHIRLA. He says the three main organizers—immigrant rights groups, unions and Occupy—tried to organize a large, all-inclusive rally for tomorrow.
But the plans fell apart, largely because of their different needs.
“We are an immigrant march, so we want to do everything by the rules—like have our permits, everything, so we don’t risk anybody," Bernabe explained. "[T]he other groups, they want to do it in a different way. They want to go over the streets with no permits, they want to have a performance with open mic, that kind of stuff. We cannot risk our people in that way.”
Occupy L.A. organizers didn’t return requests for comment. But a statement on their website says they’ll include immigration concerns in Occupy’s protest agenda.
The various marches may follow different paths and causes tomorrow, but all of them plan to descend on Pershing Square at 6 p.m. A map of the downtown street closures — and the Occupy routes — is below.
View May Day Street Closures in a larger map