Sunset Park, Bay Ridge tumbleweeds on day of ‘immigrant strike’

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Photo gallery

Shuttered: Tacos El Bronco on Fourth Avenue and 44th Street in Sunset Park did not open on Feb. 16 as part of the national a “day without immigrants” strike.
A day without tacos: A sign explains the restaurant’s reasoning.
Margarita shortage: Las Margaritas on Third Avenue near 72nd Street in Bay Ridge couldn’t open because staff didn’t show up.
Closed for a cause: El Rancho on Fifth Avenue near 44th Street rolled its gate down in solidarity with the neighborhoods immigrants.
Ghost town: It was tough to find lingerie and votive candles in Sunset Park on Thursday.

Immigrants in Sunset Park and Bay Ridge shuttered their storefronts and stayed home from work on Thursday as part of a national protest against President Trump’s policies toward immigrants. The “day without immigrants” called for locals, whether naturalized citizens or undocumented, to stay home from work or school, close their businesses, and refrain from shopping to demonstrate the economic importance of foreigners. It was a crucial day of solidarity, said one Sunset Park deli worker who was on strike.

“A lot of gates are down on Fifth Avenue because this is important. It’s important to show that we can come together at a moment’s notice and stand up for what we think is right and against policies that are unconstitu­tional,” said Sunset Parker Daniel Aguayo, who emigrated from Mexico more than 20 year ago. “I didn’t go to work because I wanted to take a stand and physically show people what they will loose without immigrants like myself. It’s a moment of solidarity.”

Word of the strike and walk-outs spread Wednesday night through social media and spread to several major cities including Chicago, Detroit, and Baltimore in response to Trump’s executive order that bans citizens from seven Muslim-majority countries from traveling to the U.S. and a separate order that directs agencies to swiftly deport illegal aliens who have committed or are wanted for committing a crime.

Some business owners were forced to close up shop when none of their staff showed up, including the owner of Las Margraitias in Bay Ridge on Third Avenue.

“I had to close today because three of my employees didn’t come to work,” said Emanuel, who declined to give his last name. “I can’t open if I don’t have a cook and waiters.”

Dozens of students from Sunset Park High School walked out of class and took to the streets marching through the nabe carrying signs that stated, “Education not Deportation,” and waved flags from Mexico and the seven countries where citizens are banned from traveling to the U.S. And grade-school classrooms were noticeably spare with some Sunset Park classrooms missing up to 10 students who stayed home with their families, teachers said.

Reach reporter Caroline Spivack at or by calling (718) 260–2523. Follow her on Twitter @carolinespivack.
Updated 10:17 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reasonable discourse

Rufus Leaking from BH says:
If you are a legal immigrant you must feel like a chump for waiting on line and paying your application fees.
Feb. 17, 2017, 1:45 pm
Misty Waters from Brooklyn Heights says:
I was in Bay Ridge, all the stores seemed to be open, minus some disgusting Arabic hookah bars that only illegal immigrants go to. They only irritated their own community.
Feb. 18, 2017, 2:09 am
Katie from Sunset Park says:
It was like hell - I wanted a taco so I had to go Chipotle! I couldn't eat one of the Tacos El Bronco tacos! I don't have time to check if they're randomly shutting down. From now on, only tacos from Chipotle for me.
Feb. 19, 2017, 9:33 pm
best thing from NYC says:
These roach motels will have no impact on NYC if lost in their entirety. They are typically way over priced nasty to look at.

All they did was loose a days revenue but their rent will be the same.

Stupid bunch of followers is all like the rest of the protesters.
Feb. 20, 2017, 11:37 am
Johnny from Sunset park says:
Wow! I live on that same block as that taco restaurant. Nice place but the owner got all his lunch trucks taking up parking on the block. And when they are not there he got his black SUV taking up the space until those trucks comes back. Also he has the dirty water from that place dumped in the gutter flowing down pass all the houses. He practically thinks he owns the block.
Feb. 20, 2017, 2:58 pm
Matt from Greenpoint says:
The "Day Without Immigrants Day" was a success. It was a day of peace and love, no violence or crime. We should maybe consider getting rid of them full time.
Feb. 20, 2017, 11:17 pm

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