Thousands Seeking Immigration Reform Rally in Miami

"There so many people out there who have so many needs and so many challenges,” marcher Andrea Rodriguez said

By Claudia DoCampo
|  Monday, Apr 8, 2013  |  Updated 1:55 AM EDT
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Thousands of demonstrators took to the streets of downtown Miami Saturday to send a loud, clear message to Congress. Marchers Andrea Rodriguez, Frances Lopez, Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado and Archbishop Thomas Wenski spoke about immigration reform.

Thousands of demonstrators took to the streets of downtown Miami Saturday to send a loud, clear message to Congress. Marchers Andrea Rodriguez, Frances Lopez, Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado and Archbishop Thomas Wenski spoke about immigration reform.

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Potential Breakthrough in Immigration

The "Gang of 8" senators are working on a new piece of legislation, allowing illegal immigrant workers to stay in the country. Expected before April, the guest worker program is yet to be set in stone. It hopes to meet the demand of new workers, as well as maintain border control by putting a cap on the number of visas issued of up to 200,000.

Immigration Reform Events in Miami, Washington

Photos and VideosDeferred Action for Dreamers BeginsDeferred Actionfor Dreamers BeginsSouth Florida Woman First Undocumented Immigrant To Have Ankle Bracelet RemovedSouth FloridaWoman First...More Photos and VideosMajor movement on immigration reform in the United States is underway as a series of media events are scheduled for Monday and Tuesday including a rally in Miami and a meeting of Senators in Washington.
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Thousands of people took to the street of Miami on Saturday to demand comprehensive immigration reform.

The Miami rally,  one of many staged around the country Saturday, came days before lawmakers in Washington are expected to reveal a bipartisan immigration bill.

VIDEO: Potential Breakthrough in Immigration

Local demonstrators demanding changes wanted to send a loud, clear message to Congress.

"There so many people out there who have so many needs and so many challenges,” marcher Andrea Rodriguez said. “A simple thing like having a driver’s license or having a Social Security number prohibits them from just doing the best they can in this country.”

More than 11 million people in the U.S. are undocumented, but want to work here legally without having to wait decades to become citizens, advocates say.

UM Law Students Help Undocumented Youths With Status

The marchers were joined by local community leaders including Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado and Archbishop Thomas Wenski.

"Most of these people here are my parishioners, and so I’m happy to stand in solidarity with them,” Wenski said. “But right now we have a moment of opportunity to gain immigration reform, and this rally is important so that Congress is reminded that we need a reform, but we need the reform to be a just one.”

Miami Mayor Regalado Gives State of City Address

Regalado said he believes that the Census didn’t count many Miami residents because they were afraid.

“These residents, if they can get to be permanent residents or citizens, they can take better jobs, they can buy houses, they can contribute more,” he said.

Groups from all over the country, including people who took part in Saturday’s Miami rally, plan to march in the nation’s capital Wednesday.

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