Sens. Menendez, Reid on Cesar Chavez Day

Sens. Menendez, Reid on Cesar Chavez Day

NEWARK, NJ –, U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ) and Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) today issued the following statement in observance of Cesar Chavez Day. The senators also announced they will be introducing again a Senate Resolution in the coming days to honor the civil rights leader. 

“It is an honor to once again commemorate the accomplishments and lasting legacy of Cesar Chavez, one of our country’s most important civil rights and labor leaders,” said Senator Menendez. “At a time when loud and angry voices insist on spreading fear and stirring up hate against our communities, let us carry forward Chavez’ call for universal dignity and respect, and recommit ourselves to follow his unwavering devotion to our community, his courage and relentless determination, and his belief in the guiding principle that we must leave the world a better place than we found it. I join New Jerseyans and millions across the country in celebrating Cesar Chavez, an American hero who showed us our voices can change the course of history and helped pave our nation’s way towards justice for all.”

“Today we honor a great American who dedicated his life to improving labor conditions for the hard-working men and women who put food on our tables. Cesar Chavez is an inspiration for Latinos and all Americans, and he continues to be a role model for those seeking to make our world a more just place,” said Senator Reid. “I will continue to‎ fight for the values Chavez stood for by working to increase the minimum wage, improve labor conditions and worker safety, ensure women receive equal pay for equal work and pass comprehensive immigration reform.” 

Cesar Estrada Chavez was born on March 31, 1927, in Arizona to poor migrant farm workers. Following the principles of Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr., in 1962 Cesar Chavez co-founded the first successful farm workers union in the United States – the United Farm Workers (UFW) to campaign for safe and fair working conditions, reasonable wages, decent housing, and the outlawing of child labor. He inspired hope in these workers through his great rallying catchphrase, "Sí Se Puede." Cesar E. Chavez was a recipient of the Martin Luther King Jr. Peace Prize during his lifetime and was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom on August 8, 1994.