Cabrillo’s origins were rooted in an act of radical solidarity. The year was 1975, and the Labor Camp was known as Cabrillo Village, occupied by low-income Mexican farmworkers who worked primarily in the lemon orchards. The homes (called “jacales,” or “shacks”) were slated for demolition and each family was offered $500 to evacuate. Out of desperation, this community arose and formed a human chain, linking arms to protect their homes as bulldozers rumbled up to destroy their only shelter.
The 80 original families fought back in solidarity and stood together against all odds to buy their homes and the land for $80,000 (in today’s market, this cost would equate to $385,000). One courageous act of Power and Purpose.
The recent acts of civil disobedience here and across our nation are the result of centuries of hate and inequality; injury and death at the hands of police brutality, abuse of power, disparities in housing, health, education and economic opportunities, including access to financial stability and increasing numbers of people living in poverty.
These are the continuing challenges we must face together. They also demand a call to action. IT IS TIME FOR CHANGE. The “American Dream” is certainly not applicable to everyone in our country when our sisters and brothers of color are racially profiled, unjustly treated, and ultimately excluded from the promise of freedom.
This is a defining moment in our time, in our history. Let’s stand proudly together in Power and Purpose to speak loudly for all who are hurting and who demand change.
Margarita H. de Escontrias, CEO
Cabrillo Economic Development Corporation