Community members unite for peaceful protest on Cuba

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MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Community members came together at the Mitchell Park Domes Sunday for a peaceful protest to spread awareness on the inhumane conditions in Cuba people are enduring.

A Cuban American from Milwaukee organized the event because of what her family and many others are experiencing in Cuba.

The peaceful protest called 'If Cuba is out on the streets, so is Wisconsin' had community members connect on an issue near and dear to them and call for action and justice for their Cuban brothers and sisters.

"We gotta bring awareness to what's happening in Cuba so we could be their voice," said Ulysses Thompson, an attendee and speaker of the event.

"I was watching all of the videos that were going on in Cuba and I felt defeated. I call my brothers in Cuba and there's nothing I can do. I can't send money, I can't send food to them. They're being starved and I feel helpless, " said Natalys Alayeto, the organizer of the event.
 
Alayeto said it's important to use her voice to raise awareness of the situation for her family and all Cubans.

"They're in need of food or medicine and the fact that we have it in our own backyard and we cant even send it to our families is why this protest is so important and to help get the message across," said Alayeto.

Community members shared their anguish for loved ones in Cuba and hope to send a powerful message to everyone with this united effort.

"We're with the First Presbyterian Church. We have a sister presbyterian church in Cuba so we're here to voice our support for the Cuban people and particularly our brothers and sisters in Cuba," said Jeff Leavell, an attendee.

"The more people know the more they can make a judgement of what can happen and what we could do and the power the U.S. can actually do to help the Cuban people down in Cuba," said Thompson.

Community members said it's important to come together in solidarity with Cubans as they are protesting for the first time in over 60 years and are in need of help.

"I think it's great to see Wisconsin people come out and express their solidarity with Cuban people. It’s really a solidarity about people just getting across borders and getting across walls. We need fewer borders and walls and more community," said Leavell.

"It just shows that you don't have to be Cuban to be human and show compassion and I'm just so thankful for everyone wanting to come out and for them wanting to support and for them wanting to join the cause with me because it's just not my fight, this is all of our fight," said Alayeto.

This comes a week after protests in Cuba started unfolding. Alayeto said its important to give a voice to Cubans who don't have a voice right now and are being silenced. She adds it's key to get all our voices together and ask our leaders in our state and country to help as well.

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