“In his most enduring legacy, (Cesar) Chavez gave people a sense of their own power,” Smithsonian Magazine wrote about the man who built the United Farm Workers (UFW).
Chavez “harnessed public outrage to achieve unprecedented gains for farmworkers. At the height of his union’s strength, more than 17 million Americans boycotted grapes to help California farmworkers win contracts.”
Chavez is best known for establishing an organization in 1962 that became the UFW. The union, which grew out of his own struggles as a child and adult picking cotton and grapes, negotiated hundreds of contracts to protect farmworker safety and wages in California.
“The fight is never about grapes or lettuce,” Chavez once said. “It is always about people.”
This morning on KQED public radio, Erik Olvera shared why, for him and his family and friends, every day is a day to honor the farmworker hero. Listen or read “With a Perspective” by Erik Olvera.