Trump's decision to end immigrant program unleashes protests

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(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
PHOENIX (AP) -

Protests are underway after President Donald Trump's decision to phase out a program for thousands of young immigrants who were brought into the United States illegally as children.

[WATCH RAW VIDEO: White House briefing on DACA decision]

[READ MORE: Trump rescinding DACA program protecting young immigrants]

[WATCH RAW VIDEO: AG Sessions announcement on DACA program]

[READ: Obama calls decision to phase-out DACA 'cruel']

[RELATED: McCain, Flake oppose the end of DACA]

[SLIDESHOW: Reactions following DACA announcement]

Here in Phoenix, about 100 people gathered outside the Phoenix office of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement to protest the Trump administration's decision to end a program protecting young immigrants from deportation.

Protesters chanted "here to stay" while marching to the building. Some people held American flags and signs that said "Defend DACA" and "RESIST." The marchers included immigrant advocates and DACA recipients.

Dozens of Phoenix high school students left a local campus and marched down a major roadway to also protest the decision.

"We’re not just here trying to get out of class, trying to skip class, trying to skip our work. It’s a movement," said Omar Galindo, a junior at South Mountain High School. "We’ve gotta stand up for what’s right."

"They’re getting an education; maybe their parents didn’t get an education," Galindo, who is not a DACA recipient, continued. "Maybe they’re doing what their parents want them to do. They just want to live up to their expectations."

Fellow student Jess Fernandez agreed.

"I just want to see equal opportunity for everyone, you know? And it’s really sad what the president is doing," Fernandez said. "I’m not a DACA student so no matter what I feel, it won’t be as strong as the emotions of those people who are,  and I understand that. It’s sad. It’s a sad truth. It’s a sad world that we live in and a sad country where even the police and the president can’t protect us from injustice."

Quinton Reed, also a non-DACA student at South Mountain, had a very specific reason for walking out of class Tuesday.

"[It was] to show that change is needed, to show that young people do have a voice in this, to show that we do have a part and a say in our government. We are the future of this."

"I’m heartbroken because everything I’ve ever dreamed of is falling apart," Aida Penuelas, who is a DACA recipient, said tearfully. "My future, I don’t see it anymore. Before this morning I would wake up and I could see a future ahead of me and now I don’t see anything; I don’t know what’s going to happen " 

Aida's parents came to the U.S. when she was 2.

"I do not remember at all living in Mexico. This my home. This is all I know; this is where I grew up," she said. "This is my country and I'm here to stay."

Elsewhere in the U.S.

Police in New York handcuffed and removed over a dozen immigration activists who briefly blocked Fifth Avenue in Manhattan in front of Trump Tower. The protest Tuesday began with a march down the street and grew to about 400 people. Some cried as they held hands during a sit-in.

In Chicago, Mayor Rahm Emanuel told youths at a high school with a large number of students in the country illegally that they are welcome. The mayor says Chicago schools will be a "Trump-free zone."

In Los Angeles, city and county officials plan to express their opposition at midday.

[RELATED: Trump ends DACA, but gives Congress window to save it]

[READ MORE: US immigration: DACA and Dreamers explained]

[RELATED: ASU president releases statement regarding DACA]


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