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Police stood by, but the protest outside the Derwood center yesterday produced no incidents or arrests, and about 20 laborers visited the center undisturbed by demonstrators.

Fernando Garavito, who manages the center, said small bands of protesters routinely show up during the week.

“That is a good thing in this country, that you have freedom of speech,” he said.

Mr. Garavito said that although the center does not check the immigration status of the immigrants who come looking for work, they all pay taxes, like every other American.

“It’s a free country. They have all the right to protest,” said Tona Cravioto, an employment specialist at the center. “It doesn’t bother us.”