Walk Remembers Farmworker's Death, Hiroshima Bombing
Friday, August 4, 2023
An event is being held this weekend to honor a farmworker who died on the job in Bellingham. It also coincides with the anniversary of the dropping of an atomic bomb on Hiroshima.
Walking Together in Remembrance will take place on Sunday to recognize the passing in 2017 of Honesto Silva Ibarra, a 28-year-old farmworker who collapsed from heat stress at work.
"This walk is to remind all of us that we will not forget," said Jason McGill, executive director of Northwest Youth Services, which fights youth homelessness in the community, "and we will continue to advocate for what is right for all."
The walking tour will begin at 10 a.m. at the Bellingham Theater Guild. The event is sponsored by Community to Community Development, a grassroots organization that fights for immigrant and farmworkers' rights. It will highlight the need for more farmworker protections as the climate crisis worsens.
Sunday is the 78th anniversary of the United States' dropping of an atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan. Before the bombing, Japanese Americans in Bellingham and along the West Coast were moved to concentration camps.
McGill noted that Bellingham has a troubling past, including one of the oldest Ku Klux Klan chapters in Washington.
"You only hear the positives about how progressive this community is," he said, "but this area has a really strong, deep racist history."
The event will also mark the removal of indigenous people in the region from their traditional fishing sites.
McGill is scheduled to speak at the event and will talk about his organization's opposition to a measure on the November ballot to build a new jail in the community.
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