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Assemblymember Roger Hernández Introduces Legislation to Honor La Paz as a State Historical Landmark

by Primo Castro


Assemblymember Roger Hernández (D-West Covina) has introduced Assembly Bill 34, a measure which would establish Nuestra Señora Reina de la Paz (La Paz) as a state historical landmark. “Despite California’s labor, civil rights and cultural history, there seems to be a general deficit of state historicallandmarks associated with our rich heritage. La Paz offers an exceptional opportunity to commemorate and conserve this distinct land,” said Hernández. La Paz covers 187 acres of eastern Kern County, California. The site is significant as the headquarters of the United Farm Workers of America (UFW) and as the burial site of the late labor and civil rights activist, César E. Chávez. From the site, César E. Chávez met with public officials, labor leaders, community organizations and industry representatives as a voice for the disenfranchised and the less fortunate.

Today, the site encompasses César E. Chávez’s home, a visitor’s center, the United Farm Workers of America’s legal aid offices, three structures and other buildings.

On October 8, 2012, President Obama visited La Paz to declare the site a United States National Historic Landmark. According to the U.S. National Park Service, it became the 398th unit in the National Park Service system, and the first honoring a Latino since the 1700s. “The federal government has officially recognized the unique historical significance of La Paz. It is long overdue for California to do the same,” concluded Hernández.

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