Tent City pre-protest party held in downtown Phoenix

Phoenix - A pre-protest party was held in downtown Phoenix Friday night in advance of Saturday's planned protest/vigil at Tent City.

A few hundred people from the Unitarian Universalist faith held the get together at a downtown park with speakers and singers to have a fun night before a long day ahead.

"Tent city is a human rights travesty," said Rev. Susan Frederick-Gray.  "We stand on the side of human rights and hope for tomorrow."

The Unitarian group is wrapping up it's week long conference in Phoenix this Sunday, but not before holding a protest vigil at Tent City on Saturday night.

They believe the outdoor jail run by Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio is unjust and inhuman, and they say it unfairly targets Latinos and African-Americans over whites.

The Sheriff is planning to close down his Valley jails to visitors on Saturday because of the protests, but he has also invited leaders of the protest groups to take a tour of Tent City to see what it's like on the inside.

After that occurs, protestors from several groups, including large numbers of Unitarians, are expected to hold protests and vigils at Tent City starting at 8 p.m. Saturday night.

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