Great Chicana revolutionary Yvonne de Los Santos will always be remembered
Los Angeles, CA – Chicana revolutionary Yvonne de Los Santos passed Sept. 21, 2017. A strong determined advocate for self-determination for our Chicano Nation, Yvonne grew up in Saticoy and graduated from Buena High School in Ventura, California. She went on to attend Moorpark and ELA Colleges.
In the late 1960s Yvonne started her activism in the Chicano student movement fighting for Chicano Studies and public education. She moved to Los Angeles were her activism flourished in the labor movement, Partido de La Raza Unida, and the Chicano Moratorium anti-war movement. She embraced the class struggle and up held the right of self-determination for our Chicano people. She welcomed Marxism-Leninism as a guide for revolutionary change and joined the August 29th Movement (M-L), a Chicano communist group with a base in the Chicano Southwest.
In Yvonne’s later years she was an active member of Centro CSO (Community Service Organization) in Boyle Heights, and a participant in the fight against police brutality and the wars in Iraq. She helped support the transition of CSO from a service group back to its original role of grassroots organizing in Boyle Heights in the Clean Schools and Escuelas Si Guerra No campaigns.
On Feb. 1, 2000, Yvonne talked about the women in the SEIU Homecare workers campaign, stating, “Now, they're always organizing to build the membership, they do it voluntarily. They have learned how to organize and have empowered themselves with their organizing skills. Many of them speak publicly to the media, they have gone to lobby the state capitol, leaving at two in the morning to let Gray Davis know about their issues. Now, they know that working together they can do it. Even some of their children, their teenagers, they want to be organizers. This has been a life-changing experience.”
Speaking at the August 2002 annual Chicano Moratorium, Yvonne, who marched in the 1970 Chicano Mortarium explained, “We are demanding the same things we did back in 1970. We still want health care, living wage jobs, an end to the targeting of brown youth to die in military service, no imperialist wars and a free Aztlan.”
On August 25, 2010 at a press conference to announce the Chicano Moratorium 40-anniversary rally Yvonne stated, “Today Chicano youth continue to be recruited by false promises of legalization and education only to be sent to fight U.S. wars for domination for profit. We denounce the current U.S. wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and call for all troops to be withdrawn. We learned from the Vietnam War that wars only serve to kill and maim our youth and make profits for the war industry like Halliburton and others.”
Yvonne de Los Santos was also a member of the League of Revolutionary Struggle in the 1980s, which disbanded in 1989. She later joined Freedom Road Socialist Organizations and continued her involvement in the Chicano anti-war movement in East LA and her role as an organizer in the labor movement with SEIU.
Viva Yvonne de Los Santos and viva self-determination for Chicanos!
A memorial will be held on Nov. 11, at 5 p.m. at the Church of the Epiphany, 2808 Altura Street, Los Angeles, CA 90031, in Lincoln Heights.
Carlos Montes is a member of Centro CSO (Community Service Organization)