'Day Without Immigrants' marches held on LI, across US

Immigrants across Long Island and the nation are skipping out on work and school today in protest.

Immigrants across Long Island and the nation are skipping out on work and school today in protest. (2/16/17)

HAMPTON BAYS - Marches were held on Long Island and around the nation for a "Day Without Immigrants" as a demonstration against President Donald Trump's immigration agenda.

Hundreds were on the streets of Hampton Bays Thursday in a show of solidarity. Marchers told News 12 Long Island that their message was about more than just unity. It was about letting their critics know how important immigrants are to the community and to the economy.

Some businesses on Long Island closed Thursday so their workers could take part in the demonstrations. La Candela Bistro in Hicksville shut all three of their restaurants in support of their employees who said they weren't coming to work.

"I want to be together with my employees who are immigrants," said Elizabeth Paulino, of La Candela Bistro.

Others, like The Garden City Bistro, closed because they had to. Owner Fran Sheehan said that while she wants to be supportive, closing the shop for a day is not what any small business owner wants to do financially.

"It's a big hit," said Sheehan.

The marches took aim at President Trump's efforts to crack down on immigration, legal and illegal, by such means as a wall at the Mexican border.

Since the end of 2007, the number of foreign-born workers employed in the U.S. has climbed by nearly 3.1 million to 25.9 million; they account for 56 percent of the increase in U.S. employment over that period, according to the Labor Department.

Associated Press Wire Services contributed to this report.

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