Santa Rita Center Recommended For National Historical Park

October 25, 2013

A Phoenix center once used as a meeting location during the farm workers labor movement in the 1960s could be included on the list of national historic parks.  The National Park Service wants to honor farm workers union labor leader Cesar Chavez.  

The Santa Rita Center in downtown Phoenix is among four locations Congress will consider establishing  a national park in honor of Cesar Chavez and the U.S. farm labor movement. Santa Rita was a church hall used to hold meetings with farm workers and community activists in the 1960s and 1970s. It is the location where Chavez fasted for 24 days in 1972. The National Park Service identified Santa Rita and three locations in California as a potential national historical park.  

Mike Littlerst is with the National Park Service.

“The next step is up to Congress. Only Congress can create a national park through the legislative process, and it’s now up to someone to introduce legislation and then for it to go through the legislative process to decide how many of the sites become national parks,” Littlerst said. 

Littlerst said it is uncertain how long before Congress decides to vote on the proposal.