Parents and professors: Reinstate vice principal, commit to equity Chico Unified grapples with equity issues in wake of Rosedale suspension

photo by Karen Laslo
Protesters outside a May 18 CUSD Board of Trustees meeting.

by Natalie Hanson
posted May 22

Following the suspension of a Rosedale Elementary assistant vice principal, families around Chico are calling on Chico Unified School District (CUSD) and the school board to not only reverse the decision, but to also take action on equity.

Joana Campos Castañeda, known as Joana Campos at Rosedale, was placed on leave last month and alleged she was told that her methods as an assigned equity lead were not appropriate for the school.

Since the decision, many parents and some Chico State educators have stepped forward to rally on Castañeda’s behalf and petition district leaders to commit to furthuring equity. A Chico State attorney has filed a complaint against the district on behalf of his Rosedale child, arguing that CUSD lacks “clearly defined procedures with respect to equity programs.” read more

KIXE film highlights immigration system breakdown At deadly border crossing, a humanitarian crisis

posted Jan. 10

A film on the humanitarian crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border, produced by immigration crackdowns over the past couple of decades, will be shown in a free KIXE PBS film screening at 6 p.m. Jan. 20.

Readers can register here to gain access, watch “Missing in Brooks County” at home, and also participate in an online community conversation afterward that will feature several local panelists, including ChicoSol Editor Leslie Layton, who has covered immigration from the Mexican side of the border. read more

Siskiyou County new frontier for resisting anti-Asian violence Hmong father killed by officers, escalating tensions

photo courtesy of Zurg Xiong’s Facebook support page
A July 17 rally in Yreka drew participants from Chico and from across the country.

by Sandy Close / Ethnic Media Services

YREKA — Over 600 Hmong Americans from across California and from as far away as Milwaukee and Minneapolis converged on a recent Saturday at the Siskiyou County courthouse in Yreka to demand a federal investigation into the June 28 fatal shooting of a Hmong father of three by law enforcement agencies.

Chico State University students and Chico-area residents were among those participating in the July 17 rally.

The protest has turned this sparsely-populated county nestled in the foothills of Mount Shasta into the newest flashpoint of resistance by Asian Americans against a surge of anti-Asian violence in the state, according to Mai Vang, a Sacramento City Council member who spoke at the rally. read more

An election ends Gridley’s “political slumber” Chico Democrats look to the small farming town for lessons

photo courtesy of Catalina Sanchez
Sanchez will be the first Latina to serve on the Gridley City Council.

by Leslie Layton

There are many things to say about the Nov. 3 General Election, including this: in southern Butte County, the small town of Gridley has awoken from decades of political slumber.

Three incumbent city councilmembers were ousted in Gridley, and two of the candidates who won their seats are apparently the first Mexican-Americans elected to the Gridley City Council. This fact in itself is surprising, because about half of Gridley’s residents are identified as Hispanic or Latino, with the vast majority of that population coming from families that immigrated from Mexico. read more

Vigil to honor RBG in Chico Ginsburg, a cultural icon, championed women's rights

photo by Karen Laslo

by Leslie Layton

Chicoans turned out this evening at City Plaza to honor the memory of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a champion of civil rights, women’s rights and voting rights, who modeled courage and toughness in her personal struggles as well as in her professional life.

Ginsburg passed Sept. 18 after a battle with pancreatic cancer, and vigils attended by supporters — most heart-broken, many despairing — were taking place throughout the country, including this one at the steps of the U.S. Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. The Chico vigil was organized by the group Women on Reproductive Defense (WORD). read more

Voter turnout critical in Butte County; vote early, officials say Experts say mail-in voting is safe; voter suppression is the problem

So-called “voter suppression laws” made it difficult for millions – many African American – to participate in the 2016 election. Turnout will be key in the upcoming General Election.

by Leslie Layton

If you’re eligible to vote in the Nov. 3 General Election, Butte County Clerk-Recorder Candace Grubbs has a single, simple piece of advice: Don’t procrastinate.

To make sure your vote gets counted on election night, register or update your registration now. Vote when you receive your ballot in October. Call the Elections Office with questions, whether you speak English, Spanish or Hmong, Grubbs says.

But in what some people are calling a “vote-because-your-life-depends-on-it” election, there is plenty to worry about in terms of national polling. In some states, millions of people who have voted previously must re-register — and may not know that — because of tough and suppressive voter registration laws. read more