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On March 31, 1927, Cesar Chavez was born in Yuma, Arizona. Today, many states recognize March 31 as Cesar Chavez Day.
 
Chavez, a migrant farmworker, became a civil rights activist and labor organizer. He helped found the influential United Farm Workers (UFW) union, and tirelessly worked to organize working class white, Mexican American, and Filipino farmworkers. The UFW supported greater safety measures, increased wages, and improved working conditions for farmworkers. Chavez himself engaged in strikes, boycotts, and even hunger strikes.
 
Cesar Chavez Day is honored as a “day of service and learning.” The day is a public holiday in California, Colorado, and Texas. Michigan, Arizona, Nebraska, and New Mexico also honor the holiday with debates and public-service events recognizing labor, civil rights, and the principles of non-violence.
boycott
Verb

to stop using or buying a product, or to stop using or buying products at a specific location, usually to make a social or political statement.

civil rights
Plural Noun

set of fundamental freedoms guaranteed to all individuals, such as participation in the political system, ability to own property, and due process and equal protection under the law.

Noun

agricultural produce.

debate
Verb

to argue or disagree in a formal setting.

engage
Verb

to become actively involved with something.

Great Depression
Noun

(1929-1941) period of very low economic activity in the U.S. and throughout the world.

grocery
Noun

food or other goods sold at a general store.

hunger strike
Noun

refusal to eat, usually to protest a social or political injustice.

influential
Adjective

important; having the ability to lead the opinions or attitudes of others.

labor
Noun

work or employment.

migrant
noun, adjective

person who regularly moves from place to place, usually in search of work.

parade
Noun

procession of performers and entertainers.

principle
Noun

rule or standard.

recognize
Verb

to identify or acknowledge.

strike
Noun

situation of people refusing to work in order to call attention to their working conditions.

tool
Noun

instrument used to help in the performance of a task.

union
Noun
organization of workers formed to protect the rights and interests of its members.
wage
Noun

money or goods traded for work or service performed.

working class
Noun

social class of workers, usually performing manual labor.