Play tells first person accounts of immigration raid - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Play tells first person accounts of immigration raid

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CEDAR FALLS (KWWL) - A day-long event at the University of Northern Iowa examined last May's immigration raid at AgriProcessors and its effects 1 year later.

Friday night, some of those arrested and jailed on immigration charges shared their stories.

Stories of why they crossed the border knowing the risks that could await them.

7 men, members of a group called Teatro Indocumentado, or Undocumented Theater, decided to stage a short play about their experiences to give audiences a chance to understand their plight both before and after the raid.

The men all say they came to the U.S. to make a better life for their families.

They were all arrested and jailed after the immigration raid at AgriProcessors in Postville last May.

Now, the men, originally from Guatemala and Mexico, are telling their stories in performance form in a play called "La Historia de Nuestras Vidas" or "The Stories of Our Lives."

"We only wanted to come here to help our families get ahead. We didn't want to come here to do anything bad to anyone else. Just wanted to come here for a better life for our families," said Onofre Macario.

The group performs the play in Spanish.

An English translation is printed in the program.

They're hoping the play helps foster understanding and makes people think about the current system.

"They were treated very badly in the jail and in the raid and they don't want this to happen again," said Luis Enrique Moncada Quiroz.

The group will perform the play in Postville Schools on the anniversary of the raid on May 12.

They'll also have two performances later this month in La Crosse, Wisconsin.

Online Reporter:  Bob Waters

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