Advisory: NAACP President to Give Keynote to Tens of Thousands at Rally for Citizenship

Diverse sectors unite to reform broken immigration system and demand congressional action

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – On Wednesday, April 10, community, labor and immigrant rights supporters and immigrant families will converge on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol, urging Congress to pass common sense immigration reform in 2013 that includes a clear and direct path to citizenship for the nation’s 11 million undocumented immigrants. NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous will deliver the keynote address.

“Now is the time to fix our nation’s broken immigration system,” stated Jealous. “The NAACP has been on the front line fighting discriminatory state laws targeting immigrants of color in states like Alabama. On Wednesday we will join with allies to show Congress that a broad, diverse coalition of conscience demands a fair and common sense path to citizenship.”

WHAT:           National Rally for Citizenship at U.S. Capitol

WHERE:         West Lawn of U.S. Capitol, Washington D.C. (press sign-in table stage left)

WHEN:           Wednesday, April 10, at 3:00pm

WHO:             Tens of thousands of immigrant families and their supporters


Speakers Include:

  • Keynote: Benjamin Jealous, President and CEO, NAACP
  • Mary Kay Henry, President, SEIU, President Bob Kin, President of the UAW, Lily Eskelsen, Vice President of the National Education Association
  • Gustavo Torres, Executive Director, CASA de Maryland
  • Hector Figueroa, President, SEIU 32BJ
  • Immigrant Rights Activist and Grammy-award winning superstar Olga Tañon
  • Representative Luis Gutierrez (D-IL-04)
  • Dolores Huerta, historic civil rights lead
  • D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray
  • Son Ah Yun, Executive Director, National Korean American Service & Education Consortium (NAKASEC)
  • Faith Leaders including UMC Bishop Carcaño, CEO Church World Service Rev. John McCullough, Rabbi David Saperstein, President of the National Latino Evangelical Coalition Rev. Gabriel Salguero, and more
    Elizabeth Alexander will read a bilingual interpretation of her 2009 inaugural poem
  • Immigrants will speak to the devastating impact of broken immigration system, including Elia Lizzet de la Cruz Valencia, who had a 6-year odyssey to reunite with her three U.S. citizen children
  • Bachata Sensation Andy Andy, Romantic Crooner Alvaro Torres and Indy Latino-fusion band Santa Cecilia
  • NAACP Board Member Rabbi David Sapertein

The rally, hosted by local organizations CASA de Maryland an SEIU 32BJ and supported by prominent local and national organizations including the Alliance for Citizenship and the Center for Community Change, will close a week of action in which dozens of events were held in communities across the country to urge immediate action to address the nation’s immigration crisis. 

More information about echo events, the rally and press credentialing can be found at

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Founded in 1909, the NAACP is the nation's oldest and largest nonpartisan civil rights organization. Its members throughout the United States and the world are the premier advocates for civil rights in their communities.  You can read more about the NAACP’s work and our five “Game Changer” issue areas here.

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