LULAC CELEBRATES LAW SIGNING BY CALIFORNIA GOVERNOR NEWSOM SUPPORTING FARMWORKERS
President and Members of Nation's Oldest and Largest Latino Civil Rights Organization Helped Lead Decades-Long UFW Struggle for Workers' Right to Unionize Free of Fear
Washington, DC - The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) issued the following statement after California Governor Gavin Newsom signed legislation that expands labor rights for the state's farmworkers. The agreement embodied in a letter commits the California Labor Federation, Governor Newsom, and the United Farm Workers (UFW) to work on clarifying language in the state legislature's next session. The goal is to create new ways for farmworkers to vote in elections to decide whether to unionize. Labor leaders want to protect workers' confidentiality for fear of being retaliated against, including being fired. Opponents warn election integrity will be compromised. Governor Newsom signed the settlement agreement only after removing a provision allowing mail-in ballots.
Domingo Garcia - LULAC National President
"I marched with Cesar Chavez for farmworker rights as a young man, and a few days ago, I was proud to go to California and do so again, this time with another generation fighting for justice. Addressing the UFW and thousands of supporters at the Capitol in Sacramento and telling them LULAC está presente reminded me of my father and mother's lives as immigrants. They worked de sol a sol, sunrise to sundown, for very little money because they had no labor rights to organize. This new law will give farm workers the power to decide if they want a union to represent them. This right is the freedom we all want to decide for whom we work and how much. LULAC supports the UFW and farmworkers in their fight."
Jose Barrera - California LULAC State Director
"California LULAC members walked with the farmworkers because we share the same journey for human dignity and social justice. Men and women toil in the fields daily, their faces unseen because they are stooped over for hours picking the fruit and vegetables on our tables. Yet, they had to fight for the right to have clean drinking water, toilets, and break times to sit or have shade for a few minutes. LULAC stands with the UFW and all farmworkers who have earned the right to have a voice in their working conditions and pay. Farmworkers nourish America and deserve our support."
Miriam Aguilar Escobar - California LULAC Deputy State Director for Women
"As a woman in LULAC, my heart and commitment go out to the campesinas I see out in the fields as I drive by, no matter the season or the weather. Their faces are covered to protect them from the sun and the pesticides, but I know them because they are my sister, mother, and grandmother; they are me, all of us as Latinas, and I am proud of what this victory means for them and their families. Far past time, farmworkers are treated as human beings worthy of our respect and help. Tell your state representative to support their bill for equal voting rights."
The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) is the nation’s largest and oldest civil rights volunteer-based organization that empowers Hispanic Americans and builds strong Latino communities. Headquartered in Washington D.C., with 1,000 councils around the United States and Puerto Rico, LULAC’s programs, services, and advocacy address the most important issues for Latinos, meeting the critical needs of today and the future. For more information visit www.LULAC.org