M.E.Ch.A: Advocating social justice


Courtesy of Alex Gonzalez

M.E.Ch.A displays empty chairs representing each of the missing 43 students of Ayotzinapa, Mexico.

Mitchell Garcia-Buckley, Staff Writer

Authorities continue to evict Sonoma County students from their homes, some before they graduate high school. Movimento Estudiantil Chicanista de Aztlan (M.E.Ch.A.) is closely monitoring Sonoma County’a rent-control problem, a pressing issue for Santa Rosa Junior College students and the entire community.

“We know of a couple of our high schoolers being evicted from their homes, before they graduate high school,” said M.E.Ch.A. member Alex Gonzalez.

Over the summer, M.E.Ch.A. went to the rent-control protest “Derecho al Techo” (right to a roof) to voice their opposition. They have also gone to the board of supervisors and city council meetings. “But the fight is tough,” Gonzalez said.

Because of the immensity of the issue, M.E.Ch.A. is working with the North Bay Organizing Project, DREAMers club, Black Student Union (BSU), Puente Club among others. All of these clubs are vocal at city council meetings and protests.

According to Gonzalez, M.E.Ch.A.’s biggest goal for 2016 is the M.E.Ch.A./B.S.U. Youth Conference. The clubs bring 6-12th grade students to their annual conference to learn about the clubs the issues that concern them. They are focusing on Native American, African-American and Latino students.

M.E.Ch.A. is also spreading awareness about the 43 missing students from Ayotzinapa, Guerrero. These students have been missing since Sept. 26, 2014 and M.E.Ch.A. is showing solidarity with the parents in Mexico who have to fight a corrupt government system.

Gonzalez said M.E.Ch.A. is also concerned with police brutality and community aid. “Throughout time there will be many other goals to come. When that time comes M.E.Ch.A. will help out in any way we can for those in need,” Gonzalez said.