Santa Cruz Indymedia :
Santa Cruz Indymedia

LOCAL News :: Civil & Human Rights

Raza Work to Stop Library Closings

XISPAS, the Los Angeles website & blog dedicated to Chicano culture, art, and politics, reports on the library crisis in Salinas California. The state will be closing three public libraries this coming June for "lack of funds", and raza are spearheading a struggle to keep the libraries open. This fight for public access is only part of our mounting battle for civil and human rights. El Movemiento is revitalized with the energy of a whole new generation working for peace and justice. We're offering an except of our library crisis coverage below... but please visit our web log for the full article and other posts of interest. ¡Si, Se Puede! -Xispas Staff /
>> On April 2nd, over 3,000 people staged a 3 mile march through downtown Salinas in Central California’s fertile Salinas Valley to protest government budget cuts that will permanently close the city’s three public libraries. Demonstrators chanted: ¡Libros Si! ¡Bombas No! (Book yes! Bombs no!) ¡Si, Se Puede! (Yes we can!), and ¡Viva Chavez! as they snaked their way through poor neighborhoods to the Cesar Chavez Public Library. The libraries are the city’s community centers, where farm worker’s children can study, use computers, and wait after school until their parents come home from the fields. One marcher said, ‘When you close libraries, you are closing off opportunities. It is particularly wrong when you are closing them in a poor community. Where are the kids going to go to use a computer?’ Over 3,000 UFW Aztec eagle flags had been passed out to the demonstrators, so the march was a sea of red. All three of the public libraries in Salinas, the hometown of Nobel laureate John Steinbeck, will be closed on June 30th due to “lack of funds.? Salinas, known as “the Salad Bowl of the World?, is a city built on agribusiness where more than half of the population are native Spanish speakers.

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