San Jose, California names park in honor of Filipino farmworkers

Published April 17, 2021, 12:16 PM

by Jaleen Ramos

A new park in San Jose, California will be named “Delano Manongs” to honor the Filipino American community in the city.

PHOTO FROM LEAD FILIPINO’S FACEBOOK PAGE/ MANILA BULLETIN

Delano Manongs Park will be the first park in San Jose to honor Filipino-Americans after the city council unanimously approved the naming during a meeting on Tuesday, April 13, according to CBS News.

“Our Filipino population in the city of San Jose has contributed greatly not only to the city, but to the country,” said Councilmember Magdalena Carrasco, who represents the district where the park is located. “To be able to recognize our Filipino ancestors in such a way is a great honor.”

The name honors thousands of Filipino farmworkers who organized and participated in the 1965 Delano Grape Strike in California’s Central Valley.

Over 1,000 Filipino workers in the Agricultural Workers Organizing Committee worked alongside activists Cesar Chavez to organize the strike protesting the poor working conditions and low wages.

“The recognition of the Filipino farm workers and especially those who stood for equality, justice, and human rights in Delano of 1965 is overdue,” said Ben Menor, a representative of the National Federation of Filipino American Associations (NaFFAA)s, in a KRON 4 report.

In the Philippines, “manong” is a term of respect for Filipino elders and “elder brother” in the Ilocano language.

Some Filipino community leaders were also present in solidarity in condemning the recent hate crimes against the Asian Americans community.

“While the Delano Manongs Park in San Jose honors the history of Fil-Ams, this history moment comes at a time when we see ourselves fronted with increases of hate and violence targeting AAPI communities, even within our own backyard,” Alex Chu of LEAD Filipino told KRON 4.

“This gesture shows that the community of San Jose’s commitment to standing against hate together, not once, but twice, with 72% of the votes, the Manongs Delano Park was voted the number one name.”

Carrasco, meanwhile, said the name for the park was also ideal as it is located in a ZIP code with one of the highest populations of Filipinos in San Jose.

Based on the census data, Filipinos make up 5.6 percent of San Jose’s population and over 13 percent of the residents in the park’s ZIP code.

 
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