Groups rally in Lexington for immigration 'legalization with dignity'

04/10/2013 04:43 PM

LEXINGTON — Students and several organizations gathered at Triangle Park in Lexington on Wednesday at the same time as thousands of other activists and immigrants around the country coordinated rallies to urge Congress to pass immigration reform measures.

Organizers of the rally say they hear politicians talking about forcing immigrants to pay fines unless they immigrate legally, but the public doesn’t understand the other hardships everyday.

Shaky Polacios, a student studying psychology and biology, came to the United States at the age of 12 with her cousins documentation.

“I never knew it was going to be so difficult to fit in, or I never knew about not accepting others, because in my country everyone gets along. Obviously, we are all Mexicans because we don’t have struggles,” Polacios said. “There is no such thing as color. There is no such thing as race. There’s nothing like that, everybody’s so acceptable.”

But despite the struggles Polacios said she faces, her concerns are more for her parents.

“I’m a student and I’m going to make it somehow,” Polacios said. “My parents…don’t have ten or twenty more years and just waste their time getting low paying jobs.”

Polacios said the stress of paying for her own schooling and frustration with her parents lack of job attainment and security pushed her over the edge.

“I had my third attempt of suicide just a couple months ago because paying for school. I have to pay for my own school, and I have to work two jobs. I have to do a lot of things, and most of the time it’s not about what I do. It’s about not seeing my parents being able to enjoy what they want to do,” Polacios said. “It feels like I’m just in a cage where I can’t completely, you know, help.”

Polacios told cn|2 she knows now that attempting suicide was not the answer to her problems, but that she has realized the immigration movement needs her.

- Video by Thomas Beisner


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