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Michael Hyatt's Photography
UFW Prop 14 Campaign 1976 portfolio
Photographs by Michael Hyatt

In 1975 the California Agricultural Labor Relations Board (ALRB) was formed to ensure peace in the fields by guaranteeing justice for all agricultural workers and stability in agricultural labor relations. But on April 3, 1976 the ALRB was shut down following the refusal of grower-friendly legislators to continue its funding. Recognizing the importance of the board, Cesar Chavez and the United Farm Workers gathered 719,000 signatures to place Proposition 14 on the November 2nd ballot. The goal of the initiative was to restore the shut-down ALRB and prevent amendments weakening the farm labor law. Passage of Prop 14 would also guarantee migrant farm workers the right to vote on labor contracts. During a speech in Ocean Park in mid-September Chavez told a large crowd that farm workers from around the state would be coming to Los Angeles in late October to help get out the vote. Upon arrival and each day until the election they became "human billboards," standing on street corners with large Yes on 14 posters. At night they camped in the old co-op warehouse in West L.A. where UFW leaders, including Dolores Huerta, would inspire them to persevere. In the November 5th issue of the L.A. Free Press my photo essay ran under the banner, "Efforts of Farm workers In Vain." Although a well-financed and deceptive grower TV ad campaign defeated the initiative, it forced the Legislature to restore funding for the ALRB. And the campaign trained an entire generation of activists in voter registration drives, mass petition campaigns, intensive door to door and street outreach, public visibility events and election day get-out-the-vote efforts. Skills learned then helped former UFW Organizing Director Marshall Ganz, who led the Prop 14 effort, go on in 2007 to develop the strategies that brought Barack Obama to office. Email Michael for more info.


United Farm Workers Co-founder Cesar Chavez (Ocean Park, CA, 1976)
United Farm Workers Co-founder Cesar Chavez
Santa Monica, CA 1976


UFW Co-founder Dolores Huerta (West L.A., 1976)
UFW Co-founder Dolores Huerta
West L.A. 1976


When Dolores Speaks (West L.A., 1976)
When Dolores Speaks
West L.A. 1976


Proposition 14 Strategy Session (West L.A., 1976)
Proposition 14 Strategy Session
West L.A. 1976


Inspiring the Workers (West L.A., 1976)
Inspiring the Workers
West L.A. 1976


Viva la Causa (West L.A., 1976)
Viva la Causa
West L.A. 1976


Matriarch of the UFW (West L.A., 1976)
Matriarch of the UFW
West L.A. 1976


Morning Prayers (West L.A., 1976)
Morning Prayers
West L.A. 1976


Yes on 14 (East L.A., 1976)
Yes on 14
East L.A. 1976


Getting the Word Out (West L.A., 1976)
Getting the Word Out
West L.A. 1976



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