Stay Woke! Dolores Huerta in Olympia


Fiona Murphy, Reporter

In the 1960s, Dolores Huerta and Caesar Chavez were on the front lines of the protest against poor workers rights for immigrant workers in the United States. Along with other activists, Dolores Huerta worked with the United Farm Workers. On March 18th, 2019 Dolores Huerta is coming to the Washington Center of Performing Arts to talk to students about how to stop bullying in the high school.

Dolores Huerta was born on April 10th, 1930 to two farm workers. Her father, Juan Ferånández was also a union activist who won a seat in the New Mexico legislature in 1938. Her mother, Alicia, ran a hotel. Alicia offered affordable prices and welcomed low wage workers at the hotel, and in some conditions, waived the fee for them all together. She also helped with community affairs and often lent a helping hand with civic organizations and her local church. Alicia encouraged the community to welcome cultural diversity. Her parents involvement in activism and cultural diversity at a young age largely influenced Dolores and her choice to work in her field.

Dolores Huerta was a revolutionary activist for many reasons. First off, she encouraged something that had not been expressed in America – the idea that it’s okay to stand up against injustice that is happening in the country. “I think one of the reasons that Dolores Huerta was so revolutionary was because she fought for civil rights. Another reason that she was so revolutionary was that she was a woman. In that time period, not many women were in the forefront for this fight.” commented Mrs. Udo, an Olympia High School librarian. In the 1960s, no one had ever seen a women become this involved in such a controversial topic, like advocating for immigrant workers rights. To have a woman advocating for immigrant rights was a groundbreaking occurence in the United States, and some people didn’t know how to deal with it. Regardless of all the cultural and social barriers that might have prevented Huerta from being an advocate, she still worked very hard and didn’t let them stop her. “Yeah, I do!” answered Ian Connelly, a high school sophomore, when asked if he knew of Dolores Huerta.

On March 18th, 2019 Dolores Huerta will bring her experience about being on the front lines for advocating for immigrant rights to Olympia High School. She’ll be inspiring youth voices for ending oppressions in the community, and supporting the Stay Woke! Conference. She will come to the Washington Center and talk to young adults about bullying and standing up against injustice. She’ll come and talk from seven p.m to nine p.m on the 18th. Teaching Tolerance Magazine, the City of Olympia, the STAND club of Olympia High School, Freedom Farmers, STAY WOKE and March for Our Lives of Olympia are the partners of this activity. Even though no fee is charged for entering this event, donations of $50, $20 and $10 will be accepted at the event. However, no one will be turned away.

Dolores Huerta was an advocate for many reasons and for many causes, but no matter how many barriers may have come along with her work, she changed migrant worker rights  for the better. On March 18th, 2019, she will come to the Washington Center and talk about her experience on the front lines and inspire students to to end oppression in the community.-