Local News


'Know your rights' class attendance spikes in immigrant community

Posted at 7:43 AM, Feb 10, 2017

Immigrant communities across the country are afraid that President Donald Trump's upcoming executive orders could affect them or their families.

A community education program known as Universidad Popular (Spanish for People's University) in Vista, California has put special emphasis lately on helping people know their rights, as some worry they could come under attack.

The community is predominantly Latino.

Class leaders report attendance has spiked since President Trump's election.

Attendees include U.S. born citizens, legal immigrants and undocumented immigrants.

This week's class focused on knowing one's rights when dealing with police or immigration enforcement.

It's a topic that has made even some longtime U.S. residents uneasy.

"This community is strong and ... is willing to actually rise up and start attending classes like this to know more about their rights," said student-turned-instructor Alonzo Martinez. "(To) put in practice how to better the community, to show the world that we're not what the president says about us."

The class is taught in Spanish. Instructors say non-English speakers have fewer resources to prove or disprove rumors they hear or read about on social media.