As threats of nationwide immigration raids loom, Minnesota state legislators and immigrant advocates will hold more than a dozen vigils Friday evening across the state as part of a broader effort to draw attention to the conditions at detention centers along the southern U.S. border.
Lawmakers will gather at Fort Snelling, outside of the region's Immigration and Customs Enforcement headquarters, at 7 p.m. Sen. Patricia Torres Ray, DFL-Minneapolis, is leading the event.
"I urge people across the state to attend this important event to raise awareness of the current administration's cruel and inhumane immigration practices," she said in a statement. "There will be a broad coalition of people attending who are dedicated to the protection of human rights and the fundamental principle behind that all people have a right to life, liberty and dignity."
Torres Ray will be joined by more than a dozen DFL lawmakers who are part of the People of Color and Indigenous caucus.
In Rochester, the vigil will start at 8 p.m. with remarks at the Mayo Park pavilion and continue with a walk to the city's government center, where participants will light candles. Other vigils are planned for St. Paul, Elk River, Ely, Duluth, Albert Lea, Lindstrom and other cities.
Several hundred "Lights for Liberty" events are planned for across the country, according to its website.
On Friday, President Donald Trump confirmed to White House reporters that authorities will begin arresting undocumented migrants on Sunday to remove people who do not have permission to be in the United States. While raids could begin in selected cities on Sunday, branches of Immigration Customs and Enforcement could begin either sooner or later over the next few days, according to the New York Times.