To pay homage to our neighbors and friends, Moraine Valley hosted a Unity Walk across campus to celebrate and support those of foreign descent. On February 15th, the Moraine Valley faculty and student body participated in a Unity Walk which honored and recognized the struggles of undocumented immigrants in the United States.

Many observers joined the event, sponsored by Team Palestine, in lieu of the nationwide “Day Without Immigrants” protest which accumulated positive responses across the country and support for those who are threatened.  Faculty and students walked to express their support for not only immigrants but also for other issues plaguing distressed individuals and groups.

Others attending the event focused on topics such as women’s rights and LGBTQ issues. The event kept true to its intended nature, which promoted unity within all groups that may be suffering from injustices and crimes throughout the nation.

The prime focus was on the immigration issue which has been a major focus of the media and the current presidential administration, with protesters nationwide and here at Moraine Valley Community College going against the current presidential policies to deport millions of illegal immigrants and instead stand with them. Participants assembled with their support for anyone who was potentially negatively affected by the executive actions put into place.

By exchanging words of advice on how to get around these actions and cushioning the potential blow to the immigrants and their families, participants hoped to convey a compassionate message; welcoming foreign visitors with open arms. The encouragement for diversity in America and for more acceptance of immigrants emanated amongst the gathering and had a very positive effect on the mood of the whole event. There was also talk on the “Day without Immigrants” protest; where a number of immigrant workers both legal and illegal went on strike for a day to show how America would look without the presence of immigrant workers, as well as to display a message that America is a nation of immigrants.

Another topic discussed around the event was the travel ban, which had devastating affects on afflicted families. There were on-going speculations that the reason for the travel ban was xenophobia and intolerance towards Muslims, however at this event no such influences were present. Along with discussion over the travel ban, a worry of there being a potential threat against women’s reproductive rights was incorporated into the discussions.

Support for the marginalized groups served to soften the potential blow, at least emotionally.  The unity walk this year preformed its function of bringing together the campus in support of marginalized groups effected and providing some comfort to our neighbors and friends.

The event managed to spark a conversation and create a gathering of students and staff to come out and vocally show that that minorities both religious and ethnic are not alone on the Moraine Valley campus nor in the United States, proving our nation and campus is arm
and arm with those suffering.