Maria Lara joined other domestic workers, some not legally in the country, to protest President’s Barack Obama’s deportation policy Monday, before heading to the Capitol to support the president's call for a minimum wage increase.
The issues of immigration reform and a minimum wage increase came together Monday in back-to-back rallies by domestic workers who were both in agreement and at odds with the president's domestic agenda.
Lara, who is employed as a caregiver for an elderly woman, had traveled from Boston for the two rallies. Asked about the seeming contradiction in her protest, Lara said it was Obama who was contradicting.
“It’s a game. He is playing and it’s like a swing, going around. He has to please his group of people and to us he's sort of dressing things up by saying he will increase the minimum wage,” Lara said in Spanish. “But then he’s turning his back to us with the deportations, separating families and doesn’t give us (the minimum wage increase).”
Congress returns this week after a two-week break but Republicans did not have immigration reform on a spring agenda distributed by Majority Whip Eric Cantor.
The administration is reviewing its deportations policies but has warned the president has limited authority to slow deportations.
Obama has been pushing for a hike in the $7.25 an hour federal minimum wage to $10.10 an hour.
Twelve people were peacefully arrested at the deportations protest after ignoring warnings from police against using banners and signs in front of the White House gates.