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REGION

Immigrant groups call for an end to raids

Day laborers and immigrant-advocacy groups converged yesterday on the grounds of the U.S. Capitol to call for an end to immigration raids.

The rally on the Capitol’s West Lawn was one of several events marking the National Day Laborer Organizing Network’s five-day annual conference, which ends Sunday.

“The raids must stop now,” said Pablo Alvarado, national coordinator for the Los Angeles-based network, which includes 33 day-laborer centers and immigrant-advocacy groups from across the country. “Families need to be kept together.”

Even though Congress didn’t pass legislation on immigration reform this year, day laborers want to be proactive, said Marissa Nuncio, staff attorney for the network.

Tonight, demonstrators will hold a vigil outside the Herndon Official Workers Center, a day-laborer center that soon might require legal-status checks of workers.

Town officials are considering applications for a new operator of the center, now run by the nonprofit Project Hope & Harmony, which does not check workers’ status.

Region gets $62 million for homeland security

Officials in the Washington region said they will use nearly $62 million in federal funds to improve local bomb squads, upgrade the radio communication system in Metro tunnels and improve information sharing across the region.

The Department of Homeland Security awarded the money last month to the National Capital Region. It’s part of the department’s Urban Area Security Initiative program.

The region didn’t get all the money it had requested. Officials here applied for $140 million.

DISTRICT

D.C. settles lawsuit over protest arrests

The District has agreed to pay $1 million to about 120 protesters who were improperly rounded up by police during demonstrations against the invasion of Iraq, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.

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