Hundreds march peacefully on May Day for workers and immigrants rights

SEATTLE -- Hundreds took to the streets on May Day for the Workers and Immigrants Rights Rally.

It’s the 18th year of the event but on Monday many who participated told Q13 News this year is more significant to them because they feel the country is taking a step back on immigration.

Among a sea of marchers, Q13 News spoke with two men from two different countries.

“I am from Kenya,” Nasir Tura said.

“Was born in Mexico City,” Pedro Espinoza said.

Espinoza and Tura are now naturalized citizens.

“This is my place, I belong here,” Tura said.

Tura said he is a Muslim who came to the U.S as a refugee from Kenya when he was 13.

Espinoza said he came to the country at 4 years of age with his parents, who were seeking a better future for their family.

“I feel fortunate that I was able to prosper in this country,” Espinoza said.

The feeling of gratitude is now mixed with concern for new immigrants who, they say, will find it harder to achieve the American dream.

“I think that’s something we are having so much turmoil over; you have a ban on Muslims, you have the wall in Mexico,” Espinoza said.

“It’s even tougher for the new refugees who come here, it’s even tougher,” Tura said.

Many people of different colors and ethnic backgrounds attended the May Day rally at Judkins Park.

“It always makes a difference to show each other that we all feel this way, to show other people that there are a lot of people who have strong feelings,” Elizabeth Sanders said.

People who showed up to the rally say this kind of activism is what Seattle is known for.

Henry Valenti traveled all the way from Tampa, Florida.

“I know Seattle is an active city, I want to be a part of that,” Valenti said.

It's a movement they say that shows that we are more similar than different.

“Muslims, immigrants hear them, it’s not about complaining. We want the same as you wish for you, the same thing you have for yourself, I want it, too,” Tura said.

Tura, along with hundreds of others, gathered at 11 a.m. at Judkins Park. They started the march through Seattle at 1 p.m., arriving at the Seattle Center around 4:30 p.m.

Speeches and cultural performances lasted until 5:45 p.m.