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Today: Yemeni bodega owners closing stores to protest Trump’s travel ban

Closed for the cause: Yemen Cafe in Bay Ridge is one of hundreds of Yemeni-American businesses around the city closing on Feb. 2 to protest President Trump’s travel ban.
Community News Group / Caroline Spivack

This could be a good day to pack lunch.

Around a thousand Yemeni-American bodega and grocery-store owners will close their stores around the city on Thursday and rally outside Brooklyn Borough Hall to protest President Trump’s ban on citizens from their homeland entering the U.S., according to the protest’s organizers.

“This shutdown of grocery stores and bodegas will be a public show of the vital role these grocers and their families play in New York’s economic and social fabric,” reads the event’s Facebook page.

The purveyors of Trump’s favorite Lay’s potato chips will be closed noon–8 pm and the rally will be at 5:15 pm.

The event will begin with a call to prayer, followed by proprietors sharing stories about how the ban is affecting them and their loved ones.

The thousand shuttered stores represent only some of the estimated 13,000 bodegas in New York City, according to a 2012 Time article — although neighborhoods with large Yemeni communities such as Bay Ridge are likely to be disproportionately affected if everything goes ahead as planned.

Reach reporter Lauren Gill at lgill@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–2511. Follow her on Twitter @laurenk_gill
On notice: Yemen Cafe’s owners explain why they’re closed and encourage others to join them rallying at Borough Hall.
Community News Group / Caroline Spivack

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