Approximately 1,000 activists marched through the streets of Boston Tuesday to protest the treatment of migrants and call for the abolition of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), recalling comments by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., who has repeatedly referred to detention facilities on the U.S.-Mexico border as "concentration camps."
Michaela Caplana, 23, helped organized the protest through the Never Again Action group, told The Boston Globe her grandmother survived Auschwitz and she lost more than 30 family members in the Holocaust, which inspired her to be part of the movement.
“When we grew up hearing the words ‘never again,’ it’s referring to a moment like this,” Caplana said, referring to claims by Democratic lawmakers Monday that detained migrants were forced to drink toilet water and did not have access to hygienic necessities such as toothbrushes and soap.
Protestors marched from the New England Holocaust Memorial to the ICE detention center in Dorchester, Boston. Never Again Action said 18 protesters were detained by police. Boston 25 News reported that some of the demonstrators were arrested as they tried to occupy the detention center.
Tuesday's protest represents the second major demonstration in Boston against the conditions in ICE detention facilities following after the mass walkout last week by Wayfair employees to protest the retailer's sale of furniture to facilities along the southern border.
"Congress needs to shut down ICE immediately and ensure freedom and permanent protection for all undocumented immigrants, refugees, and asylum seekers," Never Again Action said in a press release. "Until Congress steps up, we are making it impossible for ICE to do business as usual."