A total of 41 pro-immigration reform activists were arrested Thursday near the U.S. Capitol building for engaging in civil disobedience, in an attempt to call on House Republicans to approve legislation with a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.
The activists were arrested by U.S. Capitol Police officers for blocking traffic on Independence Avenue. Locking hands, they sat in the middle of the road with a sign in front of them that read: “Keep Families Together – Immigration Reform Now.”
On each side of the road were hundreds of advocates who were there to stand in solidarity with those who were getting arrested. They shouted phrases like: “What do we want? Citizenship. When do we want it? Now.” Some wore white shirts that read: “Citizenship Now.”
These acts of civil disobedience come as members of Congress prepare to go home for the one-month summer recess, a time when activists are planning to intensify their efforts to push for immigration reform. These acts also come a day after a coalition of pro-immigration groups announced they will be targeting 52 congressional districts where they’ve organized 360 events aimed at pushing House Republicans to take action on immigration reform.