During March, we think about spring break, beautiful weather, St. Patrick’s Day and National Women’s Month. However, many aren’t aware that the last week of March is also National Farm Worker’s Awareness Week. NFAW recognizes our farmers and the rights they’ve fought for over the decades.
Farm workers today face numerous struggles, just as they have in the past. University of Minnesota sophomore Capetra Jolly currently studies the issues in a class.
“Lots of farm workers today are immigrants; they work long hours and are not protected under the same labor laws as many other U.S. workers. Their working conditions are often even compared to that of the black slaves in the U.S. during the 1800s,” Jolly explained.
In honor of NFAW, Jolly and University junior Kynesha Patterson decided to get the University involved with the National Cesar E. Chavez Blood Drive Challenge. Cesar Chavez was one of the most notable migrant farm workers and activists in our country during the 1960s and 1970s. Chavez fought for the same rights our farmers still fight for today. This blood drive is a celebration of Chavez’s legacy and encourages students to get involved.
All University students are urged to participate. The blood drive will be held at Coffman Union from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Friday in rooms 209 and 211. It is being put on by the Black Student Union and the La Raza Cultural Center. This opportunity is a great way for each and every one of us to contribute, give back, make a difference and recognize the struggles of many farmers and minorities in our country.
Giving back to our community in this way is an important part of our education. As Chavez himself said, “The end of all education should surely be service to others.”
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