SACRAMENTO – Assemblymember Rob Bonta (D-Oakland), the first Filipino American elected to the California Legislature, held a joint press conference today with Senate President pro Tempore Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacramento) and Assembly Speaker John A. Pérez (D-Los Angeles) encouraging Californians to support Typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda relief efforts. Representatives from the Sacramento Red Cross, CaliforniaVolunteers and the California Office of Emergency Services also participated in the event to help inform Californians on how they can help victims of the Super Typhoon. Deputy Consul General of the Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco Jaime Ramon T. Ascalon thanked Californians for their help during one of the worst storms in recorded history.
(Oakland, CA) – Assemblymembers Rob Bonta, Bill Quirk, Nancy Skinner, and Bob Wieckowski and State Senators Ellen Corbett and Loni Hancock have released the following statement on the ongoing negotiations between BART and its employees:
Our hearts go out to the family members who lost their loved ones in this weekend’s tragic accident. BART, its employees, Board and management are grieving. The time is now to start the healing. For the benefit of the public, riders, Bay Area businesses and the entire BART family, it is critical to get the trains running tomorrow. As Legislators and concerned residents, we have been monitoring negotiations and encouraging both parties to resolve their issues. Thank you to the mediators for their hard work, and thank you to BART and its employees for reaching to seek common ground. We understand there are only a few outstanding issues. We call on the parties to resolve those issues today and get the trains running tomorrow.
Assemblymember Skinner’s AB 48, Coauthored by Bonta, Tightens Ammunition Sales
(OAKLAND, CA) – Assemblymember Rob Bonta (D-Oakland) was proud to announce that Governor Brown signed AB 48, authored by Assemblymember Nancy Skinner (D-Berkeley) and co-authored by Assemblymember Bonta. AB 48 seeks to curb gun violence by regulating and tightening ammunition sales in California and preventing the use of high-capacity magazines. Assemblymember Bonta made the following statement after the Governor signed AB 48:
“While tragic shootings have been a devastating reality in the community of Oakland for many decades, we believe that some of these legislative efforts will help turn the tide on the violence. I was proud to coauthor AB 48 with Assemblymember Skinner. She has worked diligently for many years, taking a strong stand against gun violence in our community and in our state,” said Assemblymember Bonta.
(SACRAMENTO, CA) – Assemblymember Rob Bonta (D-Oakland) is proud to announce that Governor Jerry Brown signed AB 537 over the weekend. AB 537 updates the Meyers-Milias-Brown Act, or MMBA, which governs local collective bargaining practices. Assemblymember Bonta made the following statement after the measure was signed into law:
“AB 537 contains modest, common-sense reforms to California’s premier collective bargaining law governing local governments, the Meyers-Milias-Brown Act. Right now, when negotiators from local governments and labor unions exchange offers and reach a tentative agreement, there is no requirement that the agreement be ratified by the parties in a timely fashion. This sometimes results in fully negotiated deals being held up for months and unilaterally reopened, although both parties have agreed to the deal. AB 537 requires those agreements to be ratified or rejected within 30 days, which will improve good-faith collective bargaining across the state,” explained Bonta.
AB 514 Result of Oakland High School 'There Ought To Be A Law' Essay Contest
(Oakland, CA) – California students affected by traumatic events or violence related to gangs, gun violence, and psychological trauma will soon have greater access to information, programs, and services as AB 514, authored by Assemblymember Rob Bonta (D-Oakland), was signed by Governor Jerry Brown this week. Assemblymember Bonta made the following statement after the bill was signed:
LOS ANGELES — California Governor Jerry Brown last week signed legislation that would incorporate the inclusion of Filipino American history in textbooks statewide.
Brown signed AB 123, a bill introduced by Filipino American Assemblymember Rob Bonta (D-Alameda) earlier this year, which would require the State Board of Education to include the role of Filipino Americans in the farm worker movement as part of the state’s curriculum.
In Oakland, where the smallest slight - real or imagined - can result in someone pulling out a gun, any government policy that addresses gun violence is welcomed.
I saw a friend at a party over the weekend whose recent experience only bolstered concerns about the proliferation of guns on Oakland streets and the dire need to address it from all angles.
In his book “America is in the Heart: A Personal History,” the great Filipino-American writer Carlos Bulosan wrote about the dire straits of Filipino farm workers like himself in the United States. “I came to know afterward that in many ways, it was a crime to be a Filipino in California,” Bulosan wrote. “It was the year of the great hatred: the lives of Filipinos were cheaper than those of dogs.”
Between 1910 and 1930, wave upon wave of young Filipino men came to America and found work mostly in its fields and canneries. In California they labored to help tame and develop the land, but their heroic efforts are barely acknowledged in recollections of the state’s history. But a significant step has recently been taken: The important role of Filipino-Americans in California’s labor history will now be taught in school.
(Sacramento) – Since the early days of our country Filipino-Americans have made significant contributions to U.S. history. In this Public Service Announcement Assemblymember Rob Bonta (D-Oakland) asks everyone to celebrated Filipino traditions and heritage during October, Filipino-American History Month.
State Board of Education Required to Provide State Curriculum on the Significant Role of Filipino Americans in the California Farm Labor Movement
(SACRAMENTO, CA) – Assemblymember Rob Bonta (D-Oakland) is proud to announce that Governor Jerry Brown signed AB 123 today – a first-of-its-kind bill to require the state curriculum to include the contributions of Filipino Americans to the farm labor movement in California. Bonta notes that Governor Brown’s signature of the bill is the perfect way to celebrate the beginning of Filipino American History Month, this October.
“The goal of AB 123 is to supplement California’s rich farm worker history with the contributions of the Filipino American community. The Filipino American population composes the largest Asian population in California and continues to grow; yet the story of Filipinos and their crucial efforts to the farm labor movement is an untold part of California history,” explained Assemblymember Bonta.
“The historical significance of vastly influential leaders, such as César Chávez and Dolores Huerta, are rightfully synonymous with California’s farm labor movement. Generations of people who follow their stories have benefited from their commitment to social and economic justice in innumerable ways. Missing from the current curriculum are events such as the Delano Grape Strike of 1965, which was led by the Agricultural Workers Organizing Committee (AWOC), comprised of first generation Filipinos. A week following this strike, the National Farm Workers Association, led by César Chávez and Dolores Huerta, combined forces with AWOC and by the fall of 1966, the numbers grew to approximately 2,000---almost entirely Filipino and Mexican workers, joined together in a powerful collaborative movement. The combined forces grew the movement to approximately 10,000 by 1970.
“By signing AB 123, Governor Brown has made an unprecedented move to give students a more complete account of California’s farm labor movement and ensure that these important leaders, such as Philip Vera Cruz and Larry Itliong are remembered by future generations of Californians,” explained Bonta.
Dolores Huerta, an iconic social justice and labor rights activist, spoke in support of the bill in committee: “The students of California need to learn that the sacrifices made by both the Filipino and Latino workers benefitted all Californians. AB 123 will ensure that the history is taught accurately.”
The bill is particularly important to Assemblymember Bonta because of his personal heritage and history. Bonta was raised as a child in La Paz, the United Farm Workers’ headquarters, where his parents organized Filipino American and Mexican American farm workers. Also, as the first Filipino American elected to the California State Assembly and the Godson of José Gomez, Executive Assistant to César Chávez, Bonta is committed to the cause of farm workers and ensuring that the legacy of the farm workers is properly taught to the children of California.
Bonta concluded, “I am proud that Governor Brown recognizes the contributions of Filipinos to the history of our state and country by signing AB 123 and including them in the history and social sciences curriculum taught in California schools.”
Supporters of AB 123 include: Dolores Huerta (Co-Founder of the United Farm Workers of America), Tita Alice Bulos (“grandmother” of Filipino American politics), United Farm Workers of America, California Teachers Association, California Federation of Teachers, California School Boards Association, Afrikan Student Union at UCLA, Alameda Councilmember Stewart Chen, Alameda Education Association, Alyansa Ng Mga Kababayan, American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, American Indian Student Association at UCLA, Anakbayan East Bay, Anakbayan Los Angeles, Anakbayan San Diego, Anakbayan Seattle, Anakbayan Silicon Valley, Asian Americans for Advancing Justice, Asian Americans for Civil Rights & Equality, Asian American Drug Abuse Program, Asian Pacific Coalition at UCLA, Barkada of Santa Clara University, Belmont High School Club Asian Sentinels Integration & Awareness, California Immigrant Policy Center, Cesar E. Chavez High School Principal Ben De León, City of Berkeley, City of Carson Mayor Jim Dear, Cosmopolitan United Church, Consulate General of the Philippines in San Francisco, Council of Philippine American Organizations of San Diego County, Filipina Women’s Network, Filipino Advocates for Justice, Filipino American Democratic Club of San Francisco, Filipino-American Educator Association of California, Filipino American Educators Association of San Diego County, Filipino Barkada, Filipino Fiesta of Sacramento, Filipino Memorial Project, Filipino Migrant Center, Filipinos Unifying Scientist-Engineers in an Organized Network, Kababayan at UC Irvine, Kabataang Maka Bayan, Katipunan Pilipino Student Organization, KAYA Filipino Americans for Progress, Laya Migrant Youth for Change and Action, Manilatown Heritage Foundation, Methodist Federation for Social Action, Muslim Students Association at UCLA, National Federation of Filipino American Associations, The People’s Education Movement, Philippine National Day Association, Pilipino American Coalition, California State University, Long Beach, Pilipino American Society for Education, Pilipino-Americans in Social Studies at the University of California, Irvine, Pilipino Pre-Health Undergraduate Student Organization, Samahang Pilipino at UCLA, University of the Philippines Alumni Association Sacramento & Vicinity, Vietnamese Student Union at UCLA, and over two thousand individuals.
Contact: Legislative Director Amy Alley 916-319-2018