(Senate - March 28, 2019)

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[Pages S2092-S2093]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office []

                             ESTRADA CHAVEZ

  Mr. MENENDEZ (for himself, Mr. Bennet, Mr. Blumenthal, Mr. Booker, 
Mr. Brown, Ms. Cortez Masto, Ms. Duckworth, Mrs. Feinstein, Ms. Harris, 
Mr. Heinrich, Ms. Hirono, Ms. Klobuchar, Mr. Markey, Mrs. Murray, Ms. 
Rosen, Ms. Smith, Ms. Warren, Mr. Udall, Mr. Durbin, and Mr. Sanders) 
submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee 
on the Judiciary:

                              S. Res. 129

       Whereas Cesar Estrada Chavez was born on March 31, 1927, 
     near Yuma, Arizona;
       Whereas Cesar Estrada Chavez spent his early years on a 
     family farm;
       Whereas, at the age of 10, Cesar Estrada Chavez joined the 
     thousands of migrant farm workers laboring in fields and 
     vineyards throughout the Southwest after a bank foreclosure 
     resulted in the loss of the family farm;
       Whereas Cesar Estrada Chavez, after attending more than 30 
     elementary and middle schools and achieving an eighth grade 
     education, left school to work full-time as a farm worker to 
     help support his family;
       Whereas, at the age of 17, Cesar Estrada Chavez entered the 
     United States Navy and served the United States with 
     distinction for 2 years;
       Whereas, in 1948, Cesar Estrada Chavez returned from 
     military service to marry Helen Fabela, whom he had met while 
     working in the vineyards of central California;
       Whereas Cesar Estrada Chavez and Helen Fabela had 8 
       Whereas, as early as 1949, Cesar Estrada Chavez was 
     committed to organizing farm workers to campaign for safe and 
     fair working conditions, reasonable wages, livable housing, 
     and the outlawing of child labor;
       Whereas, in 1952, Cesar Estrada Chavez joined the Community 
     Service Organization, a prominent Latino civil rights group, 
     and worked with the organization to coordinate voter 
     registration drives and conduct campaigns against 
     discrimination in East Los Angeles;
       Whereas Cesar Estrada Chavez served as the national 
     director of the Community Service Organization;
       Whereas, in 1962, Cesar Estrada Chavez left the Community 
     Service Organization to establish the National Farm Workers 
     Association, which eventually became the United Farm Workers 
     of America;
       Whereas, under the leadership of Cesar Estrada Chavez, the 
     United Farm Workers of America organized thousands of migrant 
     farm workers to fight for fair wages, health care coverage, 
     pension benefits, livable housing, and respect;
       Whereas Cesar Estrada Chavez was a strong believer in the 
     principles of nonviolence practiced by Mahatma Gandhi and Dr. 
     Martin Luther King, Jr.;
       Whereas Cesar Estrada Chavez effectively used peaceful 
     tactics that included fasting for 25 days in 1968, 25 days in 
     1972, and 38 days in 1988 to call attention to the terrible 
     working and living conditions of farm workers in the United 
       Whereas, through his commitment to nonviolence, Cesar 
     Estrada Chavez brought dignity and respect to the organized 
     farm workers and became an inspiration to and a resource for 
     individuals engaged in human rights struggles throughout the 
       Whereas the influence of Cesar Estrada Chavez extends far 
     beyond agriculture and

[[Page S2093]]

     provides inspiration for individuals working to better human 
     rights, empower workers, and advance the American Dream, 
     which includes all individuals of the United States;
       Whereas Cesar Estrada Chavez died on April 23, 1993, at the 
     age of 66 in San Luis, Arizona, only miles from his 
       Whereas more than 50,000 people attended the funeral 
     services of Cesar Estrada Chavez in Delano, California;
       Whereas Cesar Estrada Chavez was laid to rest at the 
     headquarters of the United Farm Workers of America, known as 
     ``Nuestra Senora de La Paz'', located in the Tehachapi 
     Mountains in Keene, California;
       Whereas, since the death of Cesar Estrada Chavez, schools, 
     parks, streets, libraries, and other public facilities, as 
     well as awards and scholarships, have been named in his 
       Whereas more than 10 States and dozens of communities 
     across the United States honor the life and legacy of Cesar 
     Estrada Chavez each year on March 31;
       Whereas March 31 is recognized as an official State holiday 
     in California, Colorado, and Texas, and there is growing 
     support to designate the birthday of Cesar Estrada Chavez as 
     a national day of service to memorialize his heroism;
       Whereas, during his lifetime, Cesar Estrada Chavez was a 
     recipient of the Martin Luther King Jr. Peace Prize;
       Whereas, on August 8, 1994, Cesar Estrada Chavez was 
     posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom;
       Whereas, on October 8, 2012, President Barack Obama 
     authorized the Secretary of the Interior to establish a Cesar 
     Estrada Chavez National Monument in Keene, California;
       Whereas President Barack Obama was the last President to 
     honor the life and service of Cesar Estrada Chavez by 
     proclaiming March 31, 2016, to be ``Cesar Chavez Day'' and by 
     asking all people of the United States to observe March 31 
     with service, community, and education programs to honor the 
     enduring legacy of Cesar Estrada Chavez; and
       Whereas the United States should continue the efforts of 
     Cesar Estrada Chavez to ensure equality, justice, and dignity 
     for all people of the United States: Now, therefore, be it
       Resolved, That the Senate--
       (1) recognizes the accomplishments and example of Cesar 
     Estrada Chavez, a great hero of the United States;
       (2) pledges to promote the legacy of Cesar Estrada Chavez; 
       (3) encourages the people of the United States to 
     commemorate the legacy of Cesar Estrada Chavez and to always 
     remember his great rallying cry, ``tSi, se puede!'', which is 
     Spanish for ``Yes, we can!''.