One of our adminstrators, and former Cesar Chavez Elementary School Principal Pilar Mejia [see photo above] received a rousing standing ovation as she quoted Paulo Freire and asked attendees to support liberatory education and to teach for social justice.
The Coalition on Homelessness, SRO Family Collaborative, and others also linked Chavez and the UFW to the ongoing fight for dignity for the thousands of homeless families in San Francisco. The Chinese Progressive Association, CCDC, Home Away From Homelessness and others also supported the kids and families as they demanded that City Hall fund programs for homeless and near homeless children and families in the City.
Above is Peabody Elementary School parent Jenny Freidenbach who also happens to be the Director of the Coalition on Homelessness speaking out for dignity for homeless children, parents and families at the rally. She said housing rights for homeless people and everyone is a human right.
At Noon, some of my SF State students and Filipino community and anti-war groups also convened a People's Tribunal at the Philippines Consulate to call for an end to US Funding of the human rights abuses in the Philippines.
Donning a black judge's robe community leader Rachel Redondiez read off a number of human rights abuse charges against President Bush and the President of the Philippines. And one by one the crowd gave a guilty verdict. The SF action followed a 13-page verdict read before about 300 people inside a church in the Hague, Netherlands, on March 25 where the Permanent Peoples’ Tribunal (PPT) found both Philippine President Gloria M. Arroyo and U.S. President George W. Bush, Jr. and their respective governments as responsible for gross and systematic violations of human rights, economic plunder and transgression of the Filipino people’s sovereignty. The verdict, read at the conclusion of the five-day second session on the Philippines by François Houtart, Session President, described the extrajudicial killings, forced disappearances, massacres, torture and other atrocities allegedly committed by the Arroyo government as “crimes against humanity”.
Pictured in the photo below is Balboa High School teacher Art Concordia and his son at the San Francisco rally.