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Old May 19th, 2016, 01:04 AM
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Default United Farmworkers Of America Started By Filipino Workers Not Mexicans

I was watching a program about farm laborers in Delano, CA. The era was the 60's. It discussed the Filipino farm workers as well as the Mexican farm workers.

Turns out the Filipinos worked in their own racial group and the Mexicans worked in their own groups as well, not together. The Filipinos were getting older and tired of working, having nothing to show for it; such as owning a home or even a decent retirement.

1,500 Filipino farm workers led by Larry Itliong went on strike. The farm owners used intimidation, bullying, and even beatings to try and stop this strike. Then the farm owners turned to the Mexican workers, offered them a tad more money, and they broke the strike line... worked as scabs, weakening the Filipino strike.

Seeing how this wasn't working out for the Filipinos, Larry Itliong approached Caesar Chavez (a young labor organizer) to join in on the strike, then the two groups couldn't be used by the farm owners to undermine one another.

At first, Chavez refused. But after thinking about Larry Itliong's logic, Chavez got the Mexican workers to join the strike. The strike lasted 5 years and in the end the famous United Farm Workers Of America [aka United Farm Workers (UFW)] was created to protect the farm workers.

The media attention was placed on Chavez and the Mexican laborers, not on the initiators, Larry Itliong and the Filipino workers. They were largely ignored and forgotten.

It was interesting to note that the program addressed the Filipino's as migrant workers but they didn't address the Mexicans as such. Some politically correct stuff going on there.

Anyway, in the end, a large retirement facility was built for the aging Filipinos. Well-deserved.

It wasn't Ceasar Chavez that started this whole thing... it was Larry Itliong and the Filipino community.

This is some history I had no clue about. It's almost as if the Filipinos were swept under the carpet and only the Mexicans, lead by Chavez were the exclusive group associated with the creation of the United Farmworkers Of America.
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