Immigration Group Boycotting Businesses

Alyssa Skiles is the owner of Patina Thrift Shop.

Skiles normally gets a regular flow of customers on a day to day basis.

However, she's noticed not as many have been coming through her doors today.

"Today's been slower than it normally is," said Skiles, "I've seen less people in and also less purchases."

Members from a new group, "Somos Comunidad," which translates to "we are community," asked hispanics to boycott all businesses in the Yakima area for the next three days.

The group wants to demonstrate the dent the local economy would take if immigration reform did not pass and illegal immigrants were deported.

"If we were to do that, it would be an unmitigated disaster," said Somos Comunidad member Stephen Robbins, "Not just for the immigrant community, but for people like myself or the growers; everybody would suffer."

"I would say that probably about 40 percent of my customers are hispanic," said Skiles.

Not all hispanics are supporting the move.

Groups such as OneAmerica say that immigration reform is already on the right track, and now isn't the right time to boycott.

"We're waiting for what happens in the future with the immigration reform proposal," said OneAmerica member Ricardo Rodriguez, "It all depends what goes on with this proposal. In the future, we probably could participate in a boycott."

For Alyssa Skiles, the reality of losing a large portion of her customer base could spell disaster for her business.

"I think across the board, anybody that owns a small business will feel that effect," said Skiles, "Every day counts here at patina for us to keep going and to be able to serve the population as best we can."