May Day 2006 Rocks Santa Cruz County

On Monday, May 1st, International Workers Day, students and workers at UC Santa Cruz walked picket lines at the base of campus and west entrance to support the rights of immigrants and all people. In the United States, grassroots organizers of May Day 2006 called for a day of, “No Work, No School, No Buying, No Selling” to help illustrate the critical role that migrants play in the United States and global economy.

Thousands of Santa Cruz residents marched from the Beach Flats to the town clock and on to San Lorenzo Park. At the town clock, the march from the Beach Flats met up with thousands of people who marched from the base of the UCSC campus.

An estimated 10,000 (or 12,000+) people marched through the streets of Watsonville to support the rights of immigrants and all people. From the Watsonville Plaza, people marched over the bridge to Pajaro and then up Main Street to Highway 152. The march then went through neighborhoods in the east side of Watsonville before returning to the Plaza.

As I came up Bay Street in the early morning, I noticed that new signs were placed along the road advising people to have their papers and identification ready as they approached at the border. The border, guarded by hundreds of students and workers, was at times very difficult to cross in a bus, truck or automobile. Bicycles and coyotes on police motorcycles had the easiest time crossing over to the other side.

The border-crossers got really sneaky, proving that they will do anything to cross, and began to re-route their original plans. Using coyotes, also known as UC Police, the border crossers used the west entrance to gain access to the campus.

Coyotes (UC Police) and the Mexican Mafia (UC Administration) were hard at work to disrupt the actions of the border patrol students and workers. At the west entrance, B. Hughes and several other coyotes encircled a student and extracted personal information from him.

I knew my chances of getting across the border were quite slim, so I headed down to the Beach Flats…

The marches were held to support the rights of immigrants and all people. In the United States, grassroots organizers of May Day 2006 called for a day of, “No Work, No School, No Buying, No Selling” to help illustrate to critical role that migrants play in the United States, and global, economy.

May Day is a global day of action and the ‘national boycott’ had no borders. In Mexico City, Subcomandante Zero (formally known as Marcos) spoke at the “Day Without Gringos” rally in solidarity with immigrants struggling inside the United States.

Protests were held all over the US and all over the world.

Here are some links to check out.

Great American Boycott Rocks the Central Coast

May Day in the Bay Part of May 1st General Strike in US

Crossposted at Indybay.org: Part I, Part II & Part III

Author: Bradley Allen

Bradley Allen is a reporter and photographer in the Monterey Bay Area, and a collective member of the San Francisco Bay Area Independent Media Center (Indybay). Follow him on social media: @BradleySA.