Cascade Media Group Celebrating Cesar Chavez for National Hispanic Heritage Month

CMG has created a series of short videos honoring People of color who have made significant contributions to our community in the past As part of CMG’s #youarehistoryproject Register Now @https://youarehistoryproject.com Cesar Chavez (born Cesario Estrada Chavez /ˈtʃɑːvɛz/; Spanish: [ˈtʃaβes]; March 31, 1927 – April 23, 1993) was an American labor leader and civil rights activist. Along with Dolores Huerta, he co-founded the National Farm Workers Association (NFWA), which later merged with the Agricultural Workers Organizing Committee (AWOC) to become the United Farm Workers (UFW) labor union. Ideologically, his worldview combined leftist politics with Catholic social teachings. Born in Yuma, Arizona to a Mexican-American family, Chavez began his working life as a manual laborer before spending two years in the United States Navy. Relocating to California, where he married, he got involved in the Community Service Organization (CSO), through which he helped laborers register to vote. In 1959, he became the CSO’s national director, a position based in Los Angeles. In 1962, he left the CSO to co-found the NFWA, based in Delano, California, through which he launched an insurance scheme, a credit union, and the El Malcriado newspaper for farm workers. Later that decade he began organizing strikes among farmworkers, most notably the successful Delano grape strike of 1965–1970. Amid the grape strike, his NFWA merged with Larry Itliong’s AWOC to form the UFW in 1967. Influenced by the Indian independence leader Mahatma Gandhi, Chavez emphasized direct nonviolent tactics, including pickets and boycotts, to pressure farm owners into granting strikers’ demands. He imbued his campaigns with Roman Catholic symbolism, including public processions, Masses, and fasts. He received much support from labor and leftist groups but was monitored by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

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