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Fort Worth Honors Latino Activists With Street Names

Dolores Huerta stands for the Pledge of Allegiance in Spanish at the New Mexico Statehouse on Feb. 27, 2019.
Associated Press
Dolores Huerta stands for the Pledge of Allegiance in Spanish at the New Mexico Statehouse on Feb. 27, 2019.

For nearly a decade, Fort Worth activist Alberto Govea has been fighting to get a street named after César Chávez and Dolores Huerta. This week, the Fort Worth City Council unanimously voted to approve a measure that names a street after the two iconic civil rights leaders.

Govea, president of the Fort Worth chapter of the League of United Latin American Citizens, says he’s relieved that Fort Worth is joining several other Texas cities, including Dallas and Austin, to honor the labor rights activists known for fighting for women’s rights and advocating for immigrants.

“The hope is that we begin to educate people outside our own community and perhaps some younger people that may not be aware of their contributions,” Govea said.

The streets are in north Fort Worth in a largely Latino neighborhood, where Govea says, the re-naming could have an impact for generations.

The city's resolution names the section of Northeast 28th Street/Texas 183 from Beach Street west to Main Street in honor of Chavez. Just northeast of this section sits Fort Worth ISD's César Chávez Primary School.

The section of Northwest 28th Street/Ephriham Avenue/Texas 183 from Main Street west to Texas 199/Jacksboro Highway is named in honor of Huerta. This is just a few blocks away from Fort Worth ISD's Dolores Huerta Elementary School.

The measure approved by the Fort Worth City Council is honorary. That means the official names do not change.

“We would like for it to become more permanent," Govea said. "And I think going forward that’s something that we will continue working on. But for now, we’re happy.”

In 1962, Huerta and Chávez co-founded National Farm Workers Association, later renamed the United Farm Workers. The two are best known for their work in labor reform, but they also advocated for immigrants' and women’s rights, and worked throughout the American Southwest. Chávez died in 1993.

Huerta, 89, received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2012 from President Barack Obama and the Eleanor Roosevelt Humans Rights Award from President Bill Clinton in 1998. 

Domini Davis contributed to this story.