Annual May Day demonstration sparks conversations on social change

Long Beach residents marched for their rights as workers for International Workers’ Day.

Over 200 marchers turnout for May Day rally in Long Beach

“Resist state violence! Rise up for our communities! Reclaim our power!” This chant was shouted by over 200 Long Beach residents, as they filled the streets of downtown Long Beach in support of the International Workers’ Day march. With a coalition of 19 community organizations, the event rallied community members to stand united for issues including workers’ rights, immigrants’ rights and rent control. “Through our hardships we stand here in support of fair treatment,” said George Funmaker, a member of Red Earth Defense, an indigenous-led group which focuses on issues affecting marginalized communities. The march began at Cesar Chavez Park Tuesday and featured a number of community advocates and speakers. The May Day March featured numerous speakers, including Jonaya Chadwick, a resident of Long Beach threatened by increasing rent costs. “My mom and I could [be] losing our home tomorrow,” Chadwick said. “It could be you tomorrow, and eventually it will affect everyone in Long Beach.” As the march began, the large crowd made its way down Magnolia Avenue toward Long Beach City Hall. Event organizers and the Long Beach Police Department kept traffic at bay as the march crowded the streets in front of the Governor George Deukmejian Courthouse.

Long Beach marches on May Day

More than 600 people from all walks of life gathered Monday night at MacArthur Park in Long Beach to be part of the International Worker’s Day march. Students, working class people, women, men, children and senior citizens showed up with a significant number of banners, placards, posters and  t-shirts as symbols of resistance against the Trump administration. The central theme of the event was to honor International Worker’s Day and to demand that Long Beach be a “sanctuary for all.” Marchers chanted anti-Trump and pro-immigrant slogans on the streets of Long Beach until the rally ended at City Hall. “This is a historic day. Over 130 years ago the May 1 strike was held by the workers,” said Alex Montances, one of the co-organizers of the event. “Today workers are fighting for better working conditions, better pay and an end to child labor.” The march attracted massive attention from the Long Beach and neighboring communities. “We are thrilled to see the community has come out. It’s a demonstration for Long Beach officials that we deserve and [we] need to have a sanctuary for all,” said Ernesto Rocha, one of the organizers of the event. Before the march began, the organizers

By | 2017-05-02T23:34:11-07:00 May 2, 2017 | 12:36 am|Categories: Events, Long Beach, News|Tags: , , , |