Sens. Menendez, Schumer Lead Commemorative Resolution in Honor of Cesar Chavez

Sens. Menendez, Schumer Lead Commemorative Resolution in Honor of Cesar Chavez

Republicans refuse to support it for tenth time in a row

WASHINGTON, D.C. – In observance of the 90th anniversary of the birth of Latino leader, labor champion and civil rights activist Cesar Chavez, U.S Senator Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) and Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) introduced a Senate resolution last night to honor his life and legacy. This resolution was also cosponsored by Senators Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Catherine Cortez-Masto (D-Nev.), Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), Patrick Leahy (D-V.T.), Ed Markey (D-Mass.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.), Bernie Sanders (D-V.T.), Tom Udall (D-N.M.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass).

The full text of the resolution can be found here.

“As Latinos grow in numbers, strength, and political power, César Chávez’s rallying cry of Si Se Puede remains as powerful and inspiring for all of us today as it was when he was securing basic workers’ rights, defending immigrant and civil rights and improving education,” said Sen. Menendez. “For the last ten years, I’ve marked this day by introducing a resolution honoring this legendary labor and civil rights activist who helped change the course of our nation’s history. Yet, for the tenth time, and at a moment of immense uncertainty and anxiety for the Latino community, we could not find one single Senate Republican willing to join us in recognizing the life and legacy of this great American in a bipartisan manner.  César Chávez’s countless efforts to ensure equality, justice, and dignity for all people in the United States are testament of his leadership and success and we eagerly await the day when politics will no longer preclude the passage of this common sense resolution.”

“Today we honor a great man, a civil rights icon and labor leader César Chávez, who fought tirelessly for fairness, justice, and equality. He persevered and against all odds succeeded,” Said Sen. Schumer. “Chávez knew that there is inherent power in the fight for justice and that though the road may be long, in the end together ‘Si Se puede – Yes we can! This César Chávez Day we must draw strength from his work and follow his example as we recommit ourselves to fighting for dignity and respect for all, and to protect and ensure the rights of workers, women, LGBTQ people, African Americans, Latinos, immigrants and Americans overall.”

César Chávez Chavez was born 90 years ago, 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 timeless 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.