The DHF’s #BeDownWithTheCount Campaign will educate hard-to-count communities about the financial and political benefits of being counted. Therefore, Dolores Huerta Foundation invites YOU to join us for our Census 2020 Town Halls during the month of January!
Childcare, Food & Translation will be provided.
Claim YOUR power! Find out how YOUR count matters in the 2020 Census and about how $20,000 can help our neighborhood build schools, health centers, and housing!
Everyone COUNTS! Everyone of us must ensure we get counted. The Census counts each living person. Your “count” helps schools, housing and healthcare over 10 years!
Fair Representation! By participating, our data will represent our political power in Congress and State Legislature.
Confidentiality! You are protected. Your responses cannot be used against you or anyone in your household. It is against the law!
How It BENEFITS our community: Build Schools, Health Centers & Hospitals. Funds Housing, Roads & Community Programs. Creates JOBS!
Find a Census 2020 Town Hall near YOU!
Caruthers, California: January 8th, 2019 at Caruthers District Fair, 13599 S. Raider Ave. 93609 For more information: Maria Galvan – (559) 864-2040
Lindsay, California: January 14, 2020 at 755 N Elmwood Ave, Lindsay, CA 93247, United States Organizer: Pam Whalen (559) 994-9390
Fresno, California: January 16, 2020 at Wesley United Methodist Church, 1343 E. Barstow Ave. 93710 Organizer: Dayana Lopez – (559) 328-9635
Parlier, California: January 18, 2020 at Parlier Junior High School, 1200 E. Parlier Ave. 93648 Organizer: Lourdes Medina – (559) 908-4692
Woodlake, California: January 21, 2020 at Woodlake Veterans Memorial, 355 Acacia St, 93286 Organizer: Pam Whalen – (559) 994-9390
Sanger, California: January 23, 2020 at DHF Sanger Office, 1446 7th St. Sanger, CA 93657 Organizer: Lourdes Medina – (559) 908-4692
For more information: Pam Whalen (559) 994-9390 or firstname.lastname@example.org
The Dolores Huerta Foundation is a non-profit organization inspiring and organizing communities to build volunteer based organizations empowered to pursue social justice.
Click on job description links for application instructions.
Community Organizers & Trainers Job Description – The DHF seeks to hire dynamic and creative Community Organizers & Trainers to engage African American and Latinx residents and establish a grassroots base of trained volunteers to engage in advocacy efforts to improve the education, health and civic engagement outcomes for residents in Bakersfield, California City, Mojave and Tulare.
Canvassers in Fresno and Tulare, CA – DHF is seeking canvassers to work in Fresno and Tulare, California. This fall, DHF will continue to re-shape the future of California through Census outreach, education and mobilization. Come help reach hard to count communities through phone banking and door to door outreach.
Computer Technician Job Description – – DHF is seeking a detail-oriented, experienced computer technician to join our fast growing organization. In this position, you will play a key role in supporting all computer, technical, and network implantation and usability for our organization. You will also provide initial new user setup, troubleshoot technical problems, work with the Information Technologies team to swiftly resolve issues, and maintain and update all current programs.
Deputy Director Job Description – The Deputy Director will be responsible for the day to day operational management of the DHF as well as coordinate training, orientation, and leadership development of staff and volunteers. The Deputy Director will work closely with the Executive Director and the senior management team to oversee the development and implementation of DHF’s strategic and operational plans.
Service Center Coordinator Job Description– The Service Center Coordinator will be responsible for setting up and maintaining Vecinos UnidosService Centers in Sanger and Arvin, California to provide needed services and resources such as translation, notary public, expungement applications, and referrals for a low fee.
Youth Program Job Announcements – DHF has launched the Youth and Family Civic Engagement Initiative (YFCEI) in Kern, Fresno and Tulare Counties and is currently recruiting for various positions. The Youth and Family Civic Engagement Initiative team members equip diverse youth, family members and community organizers with character development and leadership skills necessary for civic leadership and (equitable) workforce success.
The DHF counts on your support to continue the grassroots community organizing and leadership development that improves neighborhoods and transforms lives. This takes a huge amount of resources. Your donation helps continue our work and organize new communities.Your generous #GivingTuesday donations will strengthen our programs: making a real impact and transforming our communities.
Help with the costs of meals and childcare for trainings where parents gain the skills necessary to navigate the school system, challenge proven discriminatory discipline practices, and advocate for their children to ensure they receive the quality education all children deserve.
Your donation helps cover the rental costs for a hall where we hold community forums to educate the public on critical issues such as the census, Schools and Communities First, and candidate forums where elected officials are invited to hear directly from their constituents. DHF hosts these gatherings monthly in five rural communities: Arvin, Lamont, Woodlake, Lindsay, and Sanger.
Your generous gift contributes to the travel expenses for a group youth to participate in a statewide leadership development camping trip where they connect with other young “changemakers” and strategize, learning how to become their own powerful advocates in advancing youth rights and impacting local and state policies.
It would mean a great deal to me, and the communities we serve, if you could support our DHF #GivingTuesday Campaign.
Thank you for your continued commitment to ensuring that our communities have the skills and support they need to organize for equality and justice.
¡Sí Se Puede! Dolores Huerta President
P.S. Use the hashtag #GivingTuesday to show your support on social media after you make your donation and to encourage your community to do the same.
The Dolores Huerta Foundation, as part of the Kern Education Justice Collaborative, cordially invites you to attend the 1st ever Education Equity Summit in Bakersfield! The summit will bring parents, students, and teachers from across Kern County together to learn how to organize to dismantle the School-to- Prison Pipeline and about community efforts to advance health and racial equity in our schools.
Childcare, entertainment, and interpretation will be provided.
Guest Speakers – Tia Martinez, Executive Director Forward Change and Amir Whitaker, ACLU attorney & Researcher for UCLA Civil Rights Project
8:30 am Registration & Light Breakfast Summit Begins
9:15 amSummit Begins
1:00 pm Lunch and Entertainment
3:00 pm Closing
To register please contact: Cecilia Castro email@example.com 661.322.3033 ext 230
La fundación Dolores Huerta, como parte de la Colaborativa de Justicia Educativa en Kern, te invita a la primera Cumbre de Equidad Educativa en Bakersfield! La cumbre reunirá a padres, estudiantes y maestros de todo el condado de Kern para aprender cómo organizar para destruir el camino de la escuela a la cárcel y escuchar sobre los esfuerzos de la comunidad para promover la salud y la equidad racial en nuestras escuelas.
Con Presentadores Tia Martinez, Directora Ejecutiva de Forward Change y Amir Whitaker, ACLU abogado e investigador del Proyecto de Derechos Civiles de UCLA
Se proporcionará cuidado de niños, entretenimiento e interpretación.
8:30 am Registración y desayuno ligero
9:15 am Cumbre Comienza
1:00 pm Almuerzo y entretenimiento
3:00 pm Despedida
Para registrarse por favor de contactar a Cecilia Castro firstname.lastname@example.org 661.322.3033 ext 230
West Marin Community Services in conjuction with the Dolores Huerta Foundation, is proud to present
West Marin, ¡Sí Se Puede! An Evening with Dolores Huerta.
Friday, August 30th, 2019
West Marin Elementary School at 11550 Shoreline Hwy, Point Reyes Station, CA 94956
5:00 – 8:30 pm
The evening event will commence at five-thirty with music and food for the attendees. The program will begin at 7pm with an introduction of Dolores Huerta in English and in Spanish. This will be a free event, so that family members, regardless of income, can attend. Childcare will be provided.
While “¡Sì Se Puede! West Marin.”” is a “free” event, it is not without cost to those of us who are organizing it. Many sponsors will be providing food and supplies, but in reality, we must raise funds to cover costs.
*Please be sure to note that you are supporting the West Marin ¡Sí Se Puede! Event
PADRINO Sponsors at the $1000 level will receive two VIP seats, a meet and greet opportunity with Dolores, their name/logo will be on screen on stage during the event and listed in the program, and they will receive a large signed poster featuring the iconic image of Dolores Huerta by renowned Chicana artist, Barbara Carrasco.
PRIMO/A Sponsors at the $500 level will receive two VIP seats, their name/logo will be on screen on stage during the event and listed in the program, and they will receive a small signed poster.
AMIGO/A Sponsors at the $100 – $500 level will be listed in the program and receive a DH Poster.
If you have any questions or need more information, please contact Juanita Chavez, DHF Development and Communications Director at (661) 748-3430, email@example.com and/or West Marin Community Services (415) 663-8361, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dolores Huerta in Marin
Ms. Huerta is President and Founder of the Dolores Huerta Foundation. “¡Sì Se Puede!” (Yes, We Can!) was the motto she coined for the United Farm Workers, which she co-founded with Cesar Chavez in 1962. In 2012, President Obama awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom. At 89, she continues to inspire and organize communities to build volunteer organizations empowered to pursue social justice through her foundation.
Ms. Huerta was invited by West Marin Community Services, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing services that enhance the unity and well-being of the diverse rural population of Point Reyes Station and neighboring ranches, farms and villages.
The series of events is entitled, “¡Sì Se Puede! West Marin.” The first planned event is a morning assembly for grade school students from Point Reyes, Tomales and Bolinas-Stinson Beach. The second is an afternoon assembly for students from Tomales High School, where Dolores will focus on the importance of education, civic engagement, and the 2020 Census for all students regardless of their ethnicity, gender or legal status. Prior to her visit, the students will be exposed to curricula covering this focus and on Huerta’s life’s work in civil rights, including her time with Cesar Chavez and the United Farm Workers. Her themes will be education, empowerment and weaving movements in the quest for unity and equity.
Also in August, under the auspices of the Marin County Library system, the PBS documentary “Dolores” has been shown in Bolinas, Point Reyes and Tomales. This documentary shows the remarkable life of a woman whose continued energy and focus would tire most us. Local libraries will feature books about Cesar Chavez and Dolores Huerta. One book, “Lado a Lado (Side by Side) is a children’s book about both civil rights leaders. It will be available for purchase at Point Reyes Books.
In 2017, Marin County had a median household income of $113,908, one of the highest in California. Point Reyes Station’s median household income, on the other hand, was $31,2501. This figure did not include the income of ranch workers living outside of the village. What’s more, this figure did not include the income of many Hispanic residents who were never counted in the last decennial census. In the 2010 census, for example, only 9 Hispanics were counted in the village of Tomales (population: 204), a datum which did not reflect the reality of its local school population. This travesty of inequity is a factor that could easily reoccur in 2020 if our communities fail to become unified and empowered to correct it.
West Marin Community Services
West Marin Community Services provides a diverse range of services, not provided by other organizations or government programs, to support the residents of West Marin. By leveraging government resources and partnering with other non-profit organization, WMCS assures that “no one goes hungry” and that low-income families receive emergency services when needed. WMCS programs include a holiday food and gift program, summer swim classes for kids and fiscal sponsorship support for community partners who work within its mission, such as the Tomales Bay Youth Center, Point Reyes Farmers’ Market, Point Reyes Community Garden, and the Rotary Peace Garden at Toby’s. Many local residents patronize the West Marin Community Thrift Store, which is one of their programs. Its profits are distributed to families in need.
WMCS initiated Abriendo Caminos (Finding our Path). With support from the Marin Community Foundation, Abriendo Caminos continues as a “partnership developed in 2014 between agencies in the West Marin Collaborative and the local Latino community to increase civic engagement and leadership.” Abriendo Camino trainings have occurred within the Latino communities of Tomales, Point Reyes, Bolinas and San Geronimo.
Immigration became an unexpected additional topic for Abriendo Caminos, and WMCS began working with Standing Together West Marin, Canal Alliance, Mainstreet Moms, and other groups/volunteers to offer guidance, legal advice, etc. WMCS presented numerous Know Your Rights workshops and developed a West Marin Rapid Response System to send alerts, verify rumors of ICE actions, and coordinate volunteer assistance.
First and foremost we will engage in a 2020 census campaign targeted to all West Marin residents, but particularly to our Latino communities. We will encourage the count of all family members–adult and child–covering all households and individuals in West Marin.
2020 Census: According to a 2018 legislative analyst report, California could lose tens of millions of dollars in federal funds from a significant undercount. A complete and accurate count in 2020 is important for certain regions in the state, like West Marin, due to a misallocation of funding within the state. Many local governments receive federal and state funds that are based on population counts. “As a result, the potential loss of funds due to an undercount may have a greater impact on certain localities and their budgets relative to our state-level analysis.” It may be assumed that, because our region is located within Marin County, one of the richest counties in the state, there are few poor families in need of assistance in our rural area. An accurate 2020 census count will show that not to be the case. Our schools and our medical clinics depend upon such funding.
Secondly, we need to continue the effort to empower our diverse communities–Anglo and Latino–for a common pursuit of equity and civil engagement. Our greatest defense against the Administration’s vile behavior against our immigrant population is to unite. We need to break down the barriers of communication by building leadership, such as we did with Abriendo Caminos, and empowering all our adult residents, whether they be documented or undocumented. We will utilize the expertise of the Dolores Huerta Foundation to guide us in this endeavor.
As part of our community organizing, we will be using excess funds to wager a campaign for voter registration, which also will be tied to helping those who are eligible to become U.S citizens.
Equity requires empowerment. Empowered people, particularly those who can vote, will change America toward becoming a more humane, loving, peaceful and inclusive country that honors the diversity of its people. Dolores Huerta will inspire us to continue the fight toward this end.
Caregivers with the In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) program and SEIU Local 2015, joined by Dolores Huerta, local veterans, faith leaders, and social justice groups, shut down the county’s regularly scheduled meeting on Tuesday, August 20th, 2019. The demonstrators called on the Board of Supervisors to represent and protect the needs of thousands of caregivers and their constituents. Dolores Huerta was arrested, along with seven other demonstrators, at the Fresno County Board of Supervisors while calling for a living wage for caregivers.
Dolores stated, “In-home caregivers haven’t received a decent wage increase in over 10 years. Meanwhile, the Fresno County Board of Supervisors have given themselves a hefty salary increase. I decided to get arrested because I’m angry about the way home care workers are being treated. I was appalled by the way the sheriffs were mistreating Arnulfo De La Cruz, Executive Vice President of SEIU Local 2015. He was standing there peacefully when they grabbed him by the neck. The sheriffs were behaving in a brutish and aggressive manner in response to our peaceful protest. I am proud to stand with the over 17,000 support caregivers and their care recipients. These workers save the county upwards of $50,000 a year in providing services to the county’s elderly and differently-abled. They deserve a living wage! Si Se Puede!”
What are you up to this weekend, Los Angeles? Come to YOLA MEZCAL‘s YOLA DÍA this SUNDAY to soak up some sun and bask in the glow of feminist art, performances and opportunities for action.
Yola Dia will highlight inspiring women across different industries—featuring a unique lineup of female musicians, artists, chefs and activists. $1 from every ticket sold will benefit the Downtown Women’s Center, exclusively serving and empowering women experiencing homelessness and formerly homeless women.
Join Dolores Huerta Foundation, First and Always Melanin (FAAM) and Women’s March Kern County, Faith in the Valley with other local civil rights organizations and community members at a press conference to address the importance of creating policies that support education and mental health in order to combat violence and discrimination which disproportionately targets communities of color and the LGBTQ+ community.
Thursday, August 8th, 2019
Congressman Kevin McCarthy’s Office
4100 Empire Dr #150
Bakersfield, CA 93309
In the aftermath of two mass shootings in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio, Rep. Kevin McCarthy of California’s 23rd congressional district blamed the shootings on video games that “dehumanize individuals” and encourage violence. Research shows there is no correlation between video-game revenue and the number of violent gun deaths.* In fact, the U.S. is the third-leading country in video-game revenue per person, behind Japan and South Korea. Yet, the U.S. has more than four-times the amount of violent gun deaths than the other top nine countries in video-game revenue combined.
We believe the issue is not rooted in video-games but instead stems from white supremacy, racism, and lack of education touted by elected officials such as Rep. McCarthy and President Trump. We are calling on legislators to end gun violence and build safer communities by taking action to pass gun reform laws and implement policies that will save lives by banning assault weapons and requiring universal background checks.
* According to information cross-referencing data provided by both the Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation and NewZoo there is no correlation between video-game revenue per person and the number of violent gun deaths per 100,000 people.
ORGANIZATIONS The Dolores Huerta Foundation is a 501 (c)3 organization whose mission is to inspire and organize communities to build volunteer organizations empowered to pursue social justice. The foundation organizes at the grassroots level developing natural leaders by establishing Vecinos Unidos (“United Neighbors”) chapters in Kern, Tulare, and Fresno county. We create leadership opportunities for community organizing, leadership development, and civic engagement. Vecinos Unidos chapters work on policy advocacy in health and environment as well as education and youth development. Learn more about the Dolores Huerta Foundation at www.doloreshuerta.org.
Women’s March Kern County has oriented our mission of harnessing the power of diverse women and our communities toward creating transformative social change. We believe our diversity makes us stronger, and that working together sparks change. Women’s March Kern County is committed to pressing forward toward the vision of equity for all. We do not tolerate hate speech, bigotry, white supremacy, racism, misogyny, anti-Semitism, homophobia, islamophobia, transphobia, or any other form of hatred and division.
First And Always Melanin (FAAM) is a grassroots organization set to unite people of indigenous Afrikan origin. We seek to preserve the life of black people in Bakersfield, CA through activism, holistic health, knowledge of self, unity, cooperative sustainable economics, education, and by implementing programs that improve the community’s quality of life. Our main goal is to rebuild the black familial structure and to restore self-love among people of the indigenous Afrikan diaspora.
Faith in the Valley is a new city-, county- and Valley-wide organizing effort comprised of five multiracial, multi-faith PICO federations that are consolidating into one regional organization, building on their work over the past 15 years in five counties: Fresno, Merced, Kern, Stanislaus and San Joaquin. As an anchor member of PICO California, our mission is to unlock the power of people to put faith into action in the public square, and to advance a movement for racial justice and health equity. We seek to build relational power, lift up a new narrative about the lives of people of color, and drive civic engagement efforts that move our community priorities forward. The following are our core campaigns.
Join us for the opening of an incredible exhibit that tells the story that helped define the American experience: the farm workers labor movement of the 1960s and 1970s. The show draws on extensive Smithsonian curatorial research about legendary activist Dolores Huerta.
Huerta will be present as we celebrate her and her efforts in shaping the American experience. Enjoy a glass of wine and light appetizers as you explore the exhibition and listen to a special music & poetry tribute to Dolores.
Dolores Huerta: Revolution in the Fields / Revolución en los Campos tells one of the compelling stories that helped define the American experience—the farm workers labor movement of the 1960s and 1970s. The show draws on extensive Smithsonian curatorial research about legendary activist Dolores Huerta (b.1930).
This exhibition explores Huerta’s public life as an activist, and also examines her life as a teacher, mother, communicator, organizer, lobbyist, and contract negotiator. The show reveals the multi-ethnic aspects of the labor movement story, including the important participation of Filipinos and African Americans.
The farm workers movement of the 1960s and 1970s advanced the cause of laborers, many of whom were Mexican American and who had been working and living in dire conditions. Its charismatic leader, César Chávez, has rightfully earned a place in American history. The exhibition will broaden the understanding of this movement through a careful look at the under-acknowledged contributions of Dolores Huerta, co-founder of the union, lobbyist, and contract negotiator on its behalf.
This exhibition features bilingual text (English-Spanish), reproductions of historic and personal photographs and documents, along with protest art from the farm workers’ movement.
DOWNLOAD THE DOLORES HUERTA APP
The Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service (SITES) is proud to share the Dolores Huerta bilingual mobile app, designed to accompany the traveling exhibition Dolores Huerta: Revolution in the Fields/Revolución en los Campos. It features 16 videos of Dolores Huerta discussing her lifetime of fighting for the rights of farm workers.
To enhance your visit to this exhibition, we suggest visitors download the app before arriving to the museum. Guests can download the free app for IOS and Android. Search “Dolores Huerta” in the app store or on Google Play for Android.
LEARN MORE ABOUT DOLORES
Explore our YouTube playlist to learn more about legendary Latina activist Dolores Huerta.
Image Caption: Top right: Dolores Huerta leads supporters of the United Farm Workers (UFW) in an unidentified march, early 1970s. Unidentified photographer. Walter P. Reuther Library, Archives of Labor and Urban Affairs, Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan
Dolores Huerta: Revolution in the Fields / Revolución en los Campos is organized by the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service in collaboration with the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery. This exhibition received federal support from the Latino Initiatives Pool, administered by the Smithsonian Latino Center.
Every ten years, after the federal census, California must re-establish the boundaries of its Congressional, State Senate, State Assembly, and State Board of Equalization districts to reflect new population data and shifting populations. The Voters FIRST Act gave this power to California citizens ensuring that new and fair political boundaries are drawn without special interests, politics and political influence.
This is your chance to become a part of creating fair and transparent district boundaries that serve the best interests of the people of California. You can help ensure fair representation for all Californians and make sure your community’s voice is heard. If you have a passion for civic engagement, apply to become one of 14 new 2020 commissioners.
California citizens who are eligible may submit an online application to the California State Auditor’s Office during the initial 60-day application period from June 10, 2019, to August 9, 2019.
According to the California State Auditor, of the 6,700 initial applications submitted as of July 22, 2019, here is a breakdown by gender, ethnicity and region.
Will you and your community be fairly represented?
DHF is proud to announce that on Saturday, July 13th, Vecinos Unidos parents will be convening, for the first time, with parents from across the state as part of the Dignity in Schools Campaign CA network.
Parent leaders will convene for an opportunity to gain an understanding of how to create goals that will support the statewide mission to end the school to prison pipeline. Parents will share knowledge on how to organize as agents for change, showing solidarity between the Latinx and African American communities.
The Dolores Huerta Foundation is looking for volunteers for Voter Registration and to gather signatures for the Schools and Communities First Campaign to close California’s commercial property tax loophole and invest more than $68 million our local communities.
Voters in California have the chance to join together and make sure that by having everyone contribute their fair share, we can have the schools & community services all our families need to thrive.
We’re joining together, going all in for all of us, to stop big corporations from cheating our communities while they rake in record profits.
WALK AND PHONE BANKS HAPPENING
Saturday 6/22 10 am – 2 pm
Saturday 6/29 10 am – 2 pm
Volunteer shifts are 3-4 hours long. Volunteers are welcome to do more than one shift
Meet at the Brower Building, 1527 19th Street, Bakersfield, CA 93301 in the 4th Floor Conference Room
For more information, contact DHF Civic Engagement Coordinators Jess Contreras at (661) 421-3424, email@example.com or Eliana Honeycutt at (661) 527-3898, firstname.lastname@example.org
If you’re not available on the weekend, there are many other opportunities available.
Join the DHF in promoting CIVIC ENGAGEMENT and STRENGTHENING OUR DEMOCRACY! With your participation, we could have a tremendous impact that would lead to better schools and healthier neighborhoods. Make a difference in your community by registering and educating voters!
Please check out the latest issue of the Dolores Huerta Foundation’s Weaving Movements Newsletter to learn more about the important gains and accomplishments we made this year. Big thanks to all of our esteemed volunteers and generous donors who make this work possible!
Support DHF and receive your own DVD or Blu-ray of “DOLORES” the documentary about the life and work of Dolores Huerta and support the community organizing work of the Dolores Huerta Foundation!
Donate $25 for each DVD gift copy of DOLORES you wish to receive.
Donate $35 for each Blu-ray gift copy of DOLORES you wish to receive.
Donate $100 and get a signed copy of the Blu-ray or DVD (Customer Choice) with a certificate of authenticity. Limited edition! Only 250 available. Sealed and numbered + a standard DVD copy for viewing.
“Exhilarating, inspiring and deeply emotional” – The Washington Post
One of the most important, yet least known activists of our time, Dolores Huerta was an equal partner in founding the first farm workers union with César Chávez. Tirelessly leading the fight for racial and labor justice, Huerta evolved into one of the most defiant feminists of the 20th century — and she continues the fight to this day, at 87. Directed by Peter Bratt, and produced by Bratt and Brian Benson, “Dolores” premieres on Independent Lens Tuesday, March 27, 2018, 9:00-11:00 p.m. ET (check local listings) on PBS.
With unprecedented access to this intensely private mother of 11, “Dolores” chronicles Huerta’s life from her childhood in Stockton to her early years with the United Farm Workers, from her work with the headline-making grape boycott launched in 1965 to her role in the feminist movement of the 70s to her continued work as a fearless activist. Featuring interviews with Gloria Steinem, Luis Valdez, Hillary Clinton, Angela Davis, her children and more, “Dolores” is an intimate and inspiring portrait of a passionate champion of the oppressed and an indomitable woman willing to accept the personal sacrifices involved in committing one’s life to social change.
“In the 1970s, the national grape boycott that Dolores Huerta helped organize played out in the small rural Minnesota farming community where I grew up — supported by our Catholic church along with tens of thousands of religious organizations across the country,” said Lois Vossen, Independent Lens executive producer. “More than 40 years later, Dolores is still an indefatigable architect for social change on behalf of poor, underrepresented people, urging them to seek self-determination with her refrain ‘Si Se Puede’ (‘Yes We Can’).”
About Dolores Huerta
Dolores Clara Fernández was born on April 10, 1930, in Dawson, a small mining town in New Mexico; she spent most of her childhood and early adult life in Stockton, California, where she and her two brothers moved with their mother following their parents’ divorce. Independent and entrepreneurial, her mother was an active participant in community affairs.
After graduating from high school, Dolores earned a teaching degree, married and had two daughters. Seeing her students come to school with empty stomachs and bare feet inspired her lifelong commitment to correcting economic injustice. She found her calling as an organizer while serving in the leadership of the Stockton Community Service Organization (CSO). During this time, she founded the Agricultural Workers Association, set up voter registration drives and pressed local governments for barrio improvements.
It was in 1955 that she met a like-minded colleague, CSO Executive Director César E. Chávez. The two soon discovered that they shared a common vision of organizing farm workers and in 1962 they launched the National Farm Workers Association, which would evolve into the United Farm Workers and bring national attention to the conditions faced by farm laborers.
Huerta’s lobbying and negotiating talents helped secure Aid for Dependent Families (AFDC) and disability insurance for farm workers; she was also instrumental in the enactment of the Agricultural Labor Relations Act of 1975, which granted California’s farm workers the right to collectively organize and bargain for better wages and working conditions. While the farm workers lacked financial capital, they were able to wield significant economic power through hugely successful national boycotts. As their principal legislative advocate, Huerta became one of the UFW’s most visible spokespersons.
While directing the first National Boycott of California Table Grapes out of New York, Huerta met Gloria Steinem and was introduced to the burgeoning feminist movement, which rallied behind the farm workers’ cause. Having found a supportive voice with other feminists, Huerta began to challenge gender discrimination within the farm workers’ movement.
At age 58, Huerta suffered a life-threatening assault while protesting against the policies of then presidential candidate George Bush in San Francisco. Following a lengthy recovery, she began to focus on women’s rights, traversing the country on behalf of the Feminist Majority’s “Feminization of Power: 50/50 by the Year 2000” campaign which encouraged Latinas to run for office.
Huerta continues to work tirelessly developing leaders and advocating for the working poor, women and children as founder and president of the Dolores Huerta Foundation. She was inducted into the California Hall of Fame in March of 2013 and has received numerous awards including The Eleanor Roosevelt Human Rights Award from President Clinton in 1998, Ladies Home Journal’s “100 Most Important Woman of the 20th Century,” and nine Honorary Doctorates from U.S. universities. In 2012, President Obama bestowed on Huerta her most prestigious award, The Presidential Medal of Freedom.
About the Filmmaker
Peter Bratt(Producer/Writer/Filmmaker) is an award-winning screenwriter and independent filmmaker whose first feature Follow Me Home, premiered in competition at the 1996 Sundance Film Festival, and won the Best Feature Film Audience Award that same year at the San Francisco International Film Festival. In 2009, he and his brother Benjamin produced La Mission, a feature film shot on location in their hometown of San Francisco. The film, which Peter wrote and directed, premiered at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival and was the opening night film at the 2009 San Francisco International Film Festival, the 2009 New York International Latino Film Festival and the 2009 Outfest Film Festival in Los Angeles. For his work on La Mission, Bratt received the prestigious Norman Lear Writer’s Award and was one of 10 American independent filmmakers selected by Sundance and the President’s Committee on Arts and Humanities to launch Sundance Film Forward, a program that uses film and conversation to excite and introduce a new generation to the power of story. Bratt is a San Francisco Film Commissioner and a longtime consultant for the Friendship House Association of American Indians, a local non-profit serving the Bay Area’s Native population.