Watsonville Police Sponsor Annual Peace and Unity March

Suck It In Boys The annual Watsonville Peace and Unity March took place on Saturday, November 1, 2014. This year, for the first time since the initial event in 1994, the Watsonville Police Department was given a large role in determining the route of the march.

The march was founded in 1994 by the Watsonville Brown Berets, and the group remained primary organizers of the event from the beginning through 2011.

In 2012, the Watsonville Brown Berets were still key organizers of the event, however they also established The Watsonville Peace and Unity Coalition.

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Frank Alvarado Sr. Speaks Out Against Salinas Police; Declares “There Will Be Justice”

Angelica Garza, Frank Alvarado's Sister: "Police Should Not Police Themselves"

Angelica Garza, Frank Alvarado’s Sister: “Police Should Not Police Themselves”

At an October 1 press conference in front of Salinas City Hall, family members of Frank Alvarado reacted to the Salinas Police Department’s release of names of officers who shot and killed four Salinas residents in separate incidents this year — all four were Latino men in East Salinas.

The press conference was coordinated by Margaret Serna Bonetti, a civil and human rights activist in Salinas advocating on behalf of the families of Carlos Mejia and Frank Alvarado. Bonetti, who stated she is not being paid for her advocacy, serves as a link between the families and Oakland-based attorney John Burris. On behalf of the Mejia and Alvarado families, Burris asked the US Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division in July to investigate incidents and patterns of police brutality by SPD.

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Speak Out on the Ferguson Uprising at San José State University

Gabe at San José State University

Gabe at San José State University

On September 18, students at San José State University in California held a speak out and report back on the recent uprisings in Ferguson, Missouri following the murder of Mike Brown by police officer Darren Wilson.

The demonstration began around noon at the base of The César E. Chávez Monument: Arch of Dignity, Equality and Justice designed by Judith F. Baca in the bustling quad outside the student union building.

Students spoke loud and clear about the murder of Mike Brown, the history of racist policing in Ferguson, institutional racism within San José State University, and the Israeli occupation of Palestine.

In addition to organizing demonstrations, students created and distributed a zine on the Fight for Ferguson at San José State University. Text from the zine is published below.

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Paula Gregoire: Save Paula’s Cottage

Paula speaks with KION's Marissa Schwartz

Paula Gregoire and Isabella

On September 9, 2014, Paula Gregoire, her mother also named Paula, and her daughter Isabella, spoke before the Santa Cruz City Council against the city’s inhumane rental inspection program. The cruel and invasive ordinance was pushed through in August 2010 in a 5-1 vote by the gentrifying forces of the Santa Cruz City Council with pressure and backing from UC Santa Cruz.

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Rally in Salinas Demands Justice for Frank Alvarado, Killed by Salinas Police

"Stop Police Brutality. Justice for my uncle!"

Natalie Mendoza, Frank Alvarado’s niece: “Stop Police Brutality. Justice for my uncle!”

Update (7/15/14): Information on Donations to Frank’s Family

On July 10, 2014 at around 5 AM, officers with the Salinas Police Department reportedly shot and killed Frank Alvarado at a private home in East Salinas. Frank was a member of Santa Cruz-based Sin Barras and spoke out against prison expansion at a rally in Santa Cruz on May 14. His killing was at least the fourth murder by Salinas Police Department cops since March 21, 2014. All four police killings have been of Latino men, and all have occurred in East Salinas.

At the May 14, 2014 rally in Santa Cruz, Frank spoke passionately about the need to budget state money for social programs instead of prison expansion. Frank also shared his personal experience of incarceration, and described his release from prison in July of 2013. He cautioned that building more prisons at the sacrifice of schools and parks will lead to devastating results for California. “You will have your hell if you build those prisons,” he said.

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