We Don’t Waste Honors Cesar Chavez

March 30, 2024

We Don’t Waste is proud to celebrate Cesar Chavez for his national day of recognition, March 31st. But what is his story, and what are the accomplishments he helped farmers and laborers achieve that we can still learn from today? We thought we’d pull together some fast facts about Cesar Chavez so we can all take a moment to appreciate how he impacted the labor movement and the work culture in the United States. 

  1. In 1962 along with Dolores Huerta and Larry Itliong, he cofounded National Farm Workers Association, which is now known as United Farm Workers of America. This union helped farm workers fight for just wages, medical protection, and adequate living conditions.
  1. From 1965-70, the United Farm Workers of America led one of the most impactful combination efforts of striking, boycotting, and fasting against grape growers. Workers were making .40 per hour for their labor in the fields. These efforts were one of cross-racial unity and became a global effort. By their conclusion, workers gained the ability to collectively bargain and organize, in addition to better, livable wages. 
  1. In 1986, Cesar began the “Wrath of the Grapes” boycott which brought attention to the use of harmful pesticides and the high levels of exposure for the workers. Laborers and their family were experiencing chronic illnesses, and the land, air, and water all were experiencing negative effects as well.
  1. Cesar was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1994 for his life’s work dedicated to social justice ranging from labor rights, to supporting LGBTQ+ rights, immigration rights, and anti-war efforts. 

Chavez’s values of equity, health, and improving living conditions are values We Don’t Waste shares. We are happy to live within his legacy by partnering with local farmers and ranchers who equally see the importance of ensuring their staff, their animals, and the produce they grows are as healthy as possible for communities at large. We Don’t Waste will be closed in observance of Cesar Chavez day on Monday April 1, 2024.