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Protests Over Sweetwater School Bus Cuts, Asylum-Seeker Reunited With Family, City Heights Kids Visit Beach

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Parents and students are planning to protest cuts to bus routes and laptops in the Sweetwater Union High School District. Also, a Congolese asylum-seeker has been reunited with his family in San Diego after almost two years apart, a look at how the city of Santa Monica is ramping up rental subsidies for seniors, a two-hour trek for some kids from City Heights to the beach highlights San Diego inequities, and San Diego marks the 99th anniversary of women getting the right to vote with a march and rally.

Show transcript

Speaker 1: 00:00 Thousands of kids around San Diego County are headed back to school today. A new school year is usually pretty exciting except when students are facing cutbacks that could affect their academic performance. Some students and parents in San Ysidro are planning a protest today over cuts to school bus routes and laptops in the Sweetwater union high school district. And joining me as voice of San Diego reporter will hunts, Barry will welcome to the program. Hey Maureen. So this is not the first day back for students in the Sweetwater school district. So they've already felt the impact of these cuts. Tell us about what they're facing.

Speaker 2: 00:38 Yeah, that's right there. A year round school district. They've been back in school a couple of weeks and um, they are facing some serious cuts. The district lost about 30 bus routes. Um, Wa 20 of those bus routes were lost at one school in particular Santa CJR high school. Um, seniors also were informed this year they're not going to have laptops. They're really upset. They need those to fill out college application forms, financial aid forms. Um, and the district has also lost, um, some, it lost some summer school. It's lost some afterschool and teachers have, have lost some planning time all because of budget cuts there.

Speaker 1: 01:15 Now Sweetwater union high school district, they found itself with a major shortfall last year and that's presently under investigation, right?

Speaker 2: 01:23 Yeah, yeah, that's right. This all goes back to September of last school year. Uh, we quickly learned that the district was like, oh my gosh, we're $30 million short. We overspent by a lot of money last year. Um, a state agency then came in and said that, you know, we, we think it's quite possible there's fraud going on here. Uh, we have voice. The San Diego did some further reporting on this and we found that, um, the number two person in the finance office had actually made entries into the budget that, that made it look like the budget was better than it really was. And, and he was even going around saying to some of his colleagues, it's so bad, it's so bad. Um, there are going to be layoffs. So we don't know exactly who knew what when. But at this point, the Securities and Exchange Commission is even investigating Sweetwater.

Speaker 1: 02:20 But as Sweetwater's superintendent, Karen, Jenny just told students and faculty that there is presently no crisis. So why the cuts?

Speaker 2: 02:30 Yeah, yeah, that's right. She had just a couple of weeks ago to a board meeting. She, she said there is no crisis and uh, I think there was a collective groan across the district when she said that. Uh, I mean that's certainly not how these students at CNSC dro high school feel. They feel, they, they, they, if there's no crisis, I think they would like all their resources returned forthwith.

Speaker 1: 02:55 Now you've spoken to some of the students. What do they have to say about the cutbacks?

Speaker 2: 02:59 Well, superintendent, Karen Jannie head mentioned that they had made the cuts that were result of the over spending to try to do it with the least disruption to students. And, um, the students I spoke to were like, what does she consider a disruption? Because we don't have laptops to do the things we need to do. We literally don't even have transportation to get to school. Um, so you can imagine how they took that statement. Really. They, they want somebody to be held accountable for the mistakes and the potential fraud that happened. And that hasn't happened in Sweetwater yet.

Speaker 1: 03:37 How far do some of the students have to walk since their bus route is cut?

Speaker 2: 03:42 Uh, as much as at least six miles. Um, we have a great photographer here, Adriana Hell Ds, and she, um, did a photo essay documenting one student's journey, which takes him about four hours round trip.

Speaker 1: 03:55 Well, as I mentioned, there's a rally planned in San Ysidro over this situation later today, now over at San Diego Unified School district, the largest in the county. There's a plan to move forward with a mandatory ethnic studies program. Tell us about that.

Speaker 2: 04:12 Um, yeah, that's right. So unified, um, the biggest district in the county, like you said, had been kicking around the, the idea of, for a long time of should we require ethnic studies and they decided to finally pull the trigger. Um, students now will have to meet that requirement by 2022 and when they step into class today, they won't actually be required to take an ethnic studies course, but they'll be taking English and history courses with ethnic studies, um, embedded in them to meet the requirement. A handful of schools across the county offer actual ethnic studies. But for instance, the history course I think is called, um, identity and agency in US history. But, but as you know, Maureen, at the same time as San Diego unified as moving forward with this, the state has kind of pulled back with an ethnic studies curriculum. The state had been wanting to make it mandatory as well. But then when a draft proposal of the curriculum came out, um, a couple of months ago, people thought it was way too activist in its language and they also thought it excluded groups. Um, like there was no mention of antisemitism in the curriculum, for instance. So that state curriculum is on hold now. Um, but in San Diego unified students will be doing ethnic studies.

Speaker 1: 05:33 And in that groundbreaking series from the New York Times called 16, 19 about the role played by African Americans in the nation's history. There's a school curriculum component to that, isn't there?

Speaker 2: 05:46 Yeah. And I think it will be really interesting to see if any schools around the county start to pick it up. You know, um, students all know, uh, July, 1776, but they don't necessarily know August 20th, 16, 19, and this New York Times project wants to make that date universally known as well. The date that slaves were first brought to this country in Virginia. Uh, you know, the idea being that that moment has shaped every part of American history since then and there is a curriculum associated with that. So I'll certainly be looking forward to seeing if any schools around the county pick it up. So thank you so much. I've been speaking with voice of San Diego. Reporter will hunts Barry, thanks for your time. Thanks a lot, Maureen.

Speaker 3: 06:38 [inaudible].

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Speaker 1: 00:00 And asylum seeker from the Democratic Republic of Congo was reunited with his family in San Diego last week. After almost two years in ice detention, Constantine Buchla left the Democratic Republic of Congo with his wife and seven children to escape political persecution. Once they arrived at the San Ysidro port of entry, Constantine was separated from his family and held in detention. KPBS reporter Max Rivlin Adler was there as his new church congregation rejoiced with a welcome home celebration on Sunday after fighting to get him free and back with his family. Max, thanks for joining us. Hi. Why was Bakala separated from his wife and children once they arrived at the u s border here?

Speaker 2: 00:43 So they arrived in November, 2017 and separating one parent if there was a two parent family that arrived at the border was fairly common at the time. Um, this was before the big uproar about family separations. That was last summer in 2018 but at the time it was common for the, usually the mother to be sent out of ice detention and into the community to await their asylum claims with the children and the father to be detained. And that's what happened here. So what purpose did that serve? Ice made the argument again and again that he would be a flight risk, uh, that they wouldn't show back up to pursue their asylum claims, that they would be in the country basically. Um, you know, living here without authorization and, and trying to stay off the grid as possible. But of course, because he was intending to apply for asylum along with the rest of his family. Um, this was not something that was the case and something that has lawyers once he eventually got them made time and time again

Speaker 1: 01:40 and there were talks of, of deporting him, correct.

Speaker 2: 01:43 Right. So when he first arrived, he didn't have a lawyer, like almost all immigrants. Uh, like all asylum seekers. They don't have lawyers when they arrive and it's incredibly tough to get them. So ice gives a detainees a list of lawyers to call. He called all of them. He couldn't get in touch with any of them and at each different detention center that he was taken to, uh, he was given a new list and he had to start basically from scratch. Uh, one of the big barriers for people trying to make their own asylum claims is that everything has to be filled out in English. Uh, Bacalla was fleeing from the Democratic Republic of Congo. He speaks French, he does not speak English and was using basically a French to English dictionary to do his own asylum claims. A judge found that he did not have a viable claim and he was pretty much ready to be removed before his family was able to locate a lawyer for him.

Speaker 1: 02:37 Now that he's been reunited with his family, what type of challenges may he have coming up ahead?

Speaker 2: 02:43 Well, uh, one thing is that it's incredibly difficult for, uh, asylum seekers to get a work permit. Uh, this is a long process that you have to prove several things. His wife has a work permit. Again, this is something that it's really helpful to have a lawyer to help you, it with community organizations that have specialties in this. So it's possible that he might never get a work permit. Um, but it's something he wants to definitely focus on. He comes from a a computer systems background and that is something that he's looking forward to. He said an interview is getting back to work, but in the meantime helping out at home. Like I said, he has seven children with him.

Speaker 1: 03:21 Right. So where does their immigration status stand today? So

Speaker 2: 03:24 the family and uh, the Father Constantine had separate immigration cases because while you are held in ice detention, your case gets transferred to whatever local area you're in. So while they were in San Diego, he was in Georgia or Virginia, he got transferred around quite a bit. So they actually had a hearing scheduled for later next month in September. And that just got pushed back because as I reported on last week, basically the immigration courts are now prioritizing asylum seekers who've been sent back to Mexico to wait out their cases and they're letting people who have are not being detained to wait years, oh months or even possibly years before their hearing. So it's incredibly murky right now. And they will be living in this legal limbo for at least a another year.

Speaker 1: 04:18 [inaudible] case unique.

Speaker 2: 04:20 No, his cases, his case is only unique in that he was able to successfully fight his removal. For the most part, people do not have anyone, um, defending them in court. They don't have access to attorneys. And of course we're really helped him out with this access to this really supportive congregation at St Luke's in North Park. All of these resources that Bacala had is not something that other immigrants enjoy. But the first part of his story, I would say is incredibly similar, where you are lost in the system, you do not know which direction to turn to. You do not speak the language and soon enough you're removed from the country. And that happens to a lot of people who have been, you know, at least at their initial screening deemed to have very credible fears.

Speaker 1: 05:05 And can you tell me more about the conflict going on in the DRC and the political persecution? Buchla experienced?

Speaker 2: 05:12 The Democratic Republic of Congo has a very, uh, weak democracy, uh, that is kind of tainted by the high involvement by western and Asian mining interests. Cause this is really, um, uh, rich with natural, uh, minerals. Uh, and so they had kind of a despotic ruler, Joseph Kabila, who took over from his father and ruled for 18 years. And so at the time that Bakala and his family left, there was a time of harsh political repression as Capela, uh, tried to hold onto power past his last term limits. So, um, co Bacala was involved in pro-democracy demonstrations and because of this, he was beaten, violently assaulted by police. His wife was kidnapped and sexually assaulted by police. It was a really grotesque in their telling situation. So that's what they were escaping from just recently in the DRC. There's a new government. Um, however, given the challenges of a Bola outbreak as well as the remaining interest by foreign multinational mining groups, uh, it's going to be a tough road ahead for them.

Speaker 2: 06:19 And what have you learned about how asylum cases of Congolese people are being handled at the southern border? So it's, it's not a great situation by any means. And what's actually happening is there's a huge backup at our southern border in Tijuana itself. You've seen the shift away from Central American migrants to now a majority of African migrants. And just this past weekend there were clashes between immigration authorities and African asylum seekers at the southern border of Mexico where Mexico is trying to kind of close off this route for Africans who are flying into places like Brazil, like Bakala did and his family did. Um, where you don't need a visa and you're able to go and basically follow the land route or the boat route up through the south of Mexico and to the northern border of Mexico and the southern border of the U S and a lot of people are very upset by the perceived corruption of Mexican authorities in giving preference to Spanish speakers when it comes to the very, very few slots available for people to enter the United States and claim asylum more challenges and working their way through the process. I've been speaking with KPBS reporter, Max Rivlin, Adler Max. Thank you very much. Thank you.

Speaker 3: 07:34 [inaudible].

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Speaker 1: 00:00 Last week. Lots of kids around San Diego were taking one last trip to the beach before school starts now, but for one group of kids from city heights, a couple of hours of the sand and surf was extra special. KPBS reporter Prius Schriefer explains why

Speaker 2: 00:16 it's around 1:00 PM on an August afternoon and dozens of kids from the city heights area have gathered at the El Cahone Boulevard Transit Plaza. They're going somewhere. They rarely go to the beach,

Speaker 3: 00:28 man. Look, looking forward to playing volleyball and swimming.

Speaker 2: 00:31 11 year old, Tina Lou has only been to the beach three times even though she's lived in San Diego her whole life

Speaker 3: 00:38 and it's inconvenient for my family. And um, I have a lot of activities that I do.

Speaker 2: 00:44 This will be the first time she makes the 11 mile trek from her city heights home by public transportation. All right, let's go. It will take two buses in about an hour and a half to get to Pacific beach.

Speaker 3: 00:57 [inaudible]

Speaker 2: 00:58 one 14 the kids board, the two 35 north bus, approximately 15 minutes later they arrive at a bus stop in Kearny Mesa.

Speaker 3: 01:07 Yeah.

Speaker 2: 01:10 After walking across the street, the group waits 20 minutes for the 27 boss to Pacific beach scheduled to depart at one 51

Speaker 3: 01:18 my favorite moment in the beach was getting sand thrown at me.

Speaker 2: 01:22 They make some introductions to pass the time, the next bus rolls in, but it's having a few maintenance problems. Wait, continues about 20 minutes after it was supposed to leave. The bus finally had Zau out 3:00 PM almost two hours since their journey began. They've

Speaker 3: 01:44 need it. We went here by bus. It was my first time going here, my bus, Eh, it was, and it was my first time being on the bus ever. So it was very like, I was very nervous. It was like a little bit too cramped. But um, I think it was, it was really good though.

Speaker 2: 02:11 10 year old Allen Vez [inaudible] and most of his friends had few complaints despite the long commute. But sitting on a cramped bus for two hours isn't acceptable. Says Randy tourist van black. He's with the city heights community development corporation. They organize the trip to highlight what they say are inequities in ocean accessibility for minorities and low income people. In San Diego.

Speaker 4: 02:36 There's a lot of folks in our neighborhood and in city heights but want to be able to go to the beach but because of different access issues, affordability, it's not really a feasible,

Speaker 2: 02:47 according to SANDAG is regional plan minorities and low income people in San Diego are more likely to live farther than 15 minutes away from the beach by both car and public MTS spokesperson Rob Shupe says that there are a lot of considerations that go into planning bus routes and their frequencies.

Speaker 5: 03:07 You know San Diego is a spread out community. We have over a hundred buses that are a hundred bus routes. We got 800 vehicles out there including over a hundred trolleys. Some it's well-designed but but San Diego is a challenging area to get people where they want to do go. Wee people live here and are working way over here and vice versa.

Speaker 2: 03:29 Back at the beach, the kids are enjoying their time in the sun and the water. They plan to stay for about an hour before they grabbed some tacos and board the bus again to make the trip home. Jonathan Burgos is one of the chaperones for the kids. He says all kids should have a chance to take advantage of the beach

Speaker 6: 03:48 to, to be here to watch a sunset. So even like have a smores on the beach, you know, those are things that sometimes like I took for granted, you know, growing up, a lot of times when the students have that, it's just, it's such a game changer. Like to know that they hadn't had that in their lives and like I just want that and we should want that. And I think everyone should have that opportunity.

Speaker 2: 04:09 11 year old Randy Thorn says the beach is his happy place.

Speaker 3: 04:14 The beach I can explore, like learn more new things.

Speaker 2: 04:20 Joining me is KPBS reporter [inaudible] ether and welcome Priya. Thanks for having me. First of all, what happened to the bus? Why did it break down? So we didn't really get a clear answer beyond there were maintenance issues and I did bring it up with the MTS spokesperson when I got a chance to talk to him and he said, listen, this happens. You know, anyone who rides public transit knows that, you know, it's not a completely smooth system, but he claims that compared to other cities of San Diego size, that we actually have pretty good numbers when it comes to the amount of breakdowns we have on the road. But of course that's what happens when you go on public transit. There are things that are out of your control and so it's really hard to plan accordingly and make sure that you're going to get somewhere on time because you're not really responsible for that vehicle in the same way that you are when you're riding in your own personal car.

Speaker 2: 05:10 Now, a lot of us of course, don't get to the beach as much as we'd like to, but that's not because it would take us two hours to get there. Is there really not a faster public transit route from city heights to the beach? That was the fastest one, surprisingly. So, um, I think that's one of the things that obviously the story highlights is there aren't a lot of direct routes and how do we prioritize when it comes to urban planning, um, where we want to move people from place to place and it seems like the most logical ways are in high densely populated areas. And then also areas where there is a lot of jobs. And you know, I did speak to uh, mts about that as well. And they said, of course, they also have to focus on areas where there is a big transit riding population and city heights actually happens to be a huge, um, a lot of times we're seeing people on public transit who are from low income communities.

Speaker 2: 06:03 Obviously it costs a few dollars to ride on a bus. So, um, you're seeing a lot of people use that for their commute to work. And so that's something that they're prioritizing over perhaps going to the beach. But what was shocking to me is that we live here in beautiful San Diego. What do people think about when they think of San Diego? They think of the ocean. And many of these kids had been living here for 10, 12 years and had only gone to the beach a handful of times because it's so difficult to get to. Why did the city Heights Community Development Corporation organized this trip? So they're really trying to make people in San Diego think about how easy it is to get around on public transit. And so it's a series of community rides that they're doing. They've done one called boulevard to the border, uh, which goes, went from alcohol and Boulevard, the same transit plaza to the border.

Speaker 2: 06:50 Then they did a boulevard to the beach and the next one they're doing is boulevard to the ballparks. So, um, they're really trying to highlight these inequities. And they're also asking people, you know, mts is doing a campaign called elevate San Diego 2020, where they're trying to get people to think about how we look at public transportation and, um, essentially put forth a funding measure for the 2020 ballot. And so if it gets two thirds of voter approval here in San Diego, um, that would increase our sales tax a little bit to have perhaps better, um, service area within the San Diego area. And so if you're interested in learning more about that, you can go to elevate SD 20 twenty.com. How do the problems of having to rely on public transit affect other aspects of life in city heights? Yeah, so think about it. I mean, there's a trickle effect here.

Speaker 2: 07:38 It makes your commute to work longer. You know, a lot of these people are choosing to live in certain communities because the rent is low, but then when you factor in perhaps a two, three hour commute to work, is it really worth it? And then when you talk about families who have children, um, that's also longer childcare and having to figure out the logistics of all of that. So all of this adds up, you know, time is money and if you're going to spend hours of your life on a bus, you have to figure out how that's gonna impact the rest of your family as well. Aside from the proposed ballot measure that you mentioned, a lot of this has to do, of course with transportation planning is any thing in the works to increase accessibility for study heights? Yeah. So there's also bus only lanes that are being proposed in city heights that will perhaps make a riding on buses faster because they won't be competing with regular traffic.

Speaker 2: 08:31 And so as you know, our KPBS as Metro reporter Andrew Bowen has been doing a lot of reporting on that. And that's something that the community as a whole, you know, a lot of people in cars say we don't want these bus only lanes because it's gonna make our commute. It's longer. So the city really needs to stop and think about how, what percentage of our population is riding public transit now and as the city continues to grow, um, how many people will be to that as an option in the future as well? Let's get back to the kids you met. They spent longer on the bus than they did actually at the beach. Did the long ride get to them at all? So these guys were incredibly patient and they were also very cute, but I mean I think one thing as an adult is we sometimes lose our patients a lot more quickly than the kids and they were just so excited.

Speaker 2: 09:15 Many of them said it was the first time they'd actually been on real public transportation. They had been on school buses obviously, but not an actual mts bus. So they were sort of fascinated by the whole experience. They had seen these buses in their neighborhood, in their community, and I think the fact that they were with dozens of their friends made the ride a little bit more enjoyable to them. Perhaps if they were just with a parent or a guardian, I'm on this two hour bus ride. They would've maybe been whining a little bit more, but overall they actually thought it was a really fun experience. Did you get the sense they'd be willing to do it again to get to the beach? Probably, but I have a feeling that that commute would get a little bit old if they had to do it more frequently. I think the novelty would wear off. And I think that's exactly why. Um, you know, the city heights CDC decided to organize this was to really, really show that I've been speaking with KPBS reporter Prius. Truther thank you so much for Ya. Thanks.

Speaker 3: 10:11 [inaudible].

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Speaker 1: 00:00 A disturbing number of California seniors are losing their apartments and ending up homeless because they can't afford higher rents. Santa Monica though has been experimenting with giving cash assistance to low income seniors and the pilot program there has been so successful. The city is planning to expand it as part of our California dream collaboration. KPBS is a meet the Sharma reports.

Speaker 2: 00:23 I first met Kay last year in Santa Monica dressed in red with matching lipstick. The 70 year old had barely been making it on her thousand dollars a month. Social Security checks. If I didn't have money to eat after paying my monthly bills, I just didn't need. Kay was one of nearly two dozen elderly people. Santa Monica chose for its pilot. The city wanted to help cash, poor seniors stay housed so it cut checks for a few hundred dollars each month to them or their landlords. When I met Kay last year, she said it was working. If it weren't for the city of Santa Monica helping me, I would probably by now have been evicted and on the street and now a year in how are things I called k backup. Oh, so much

Speaker 1: 01:10 better. I haven't been to a food bank, but twice in the last year

Speaker 2: 01:16 the city of Santa Monica says there was a 3% rise in senior homelessness in 2018 but no one in its rental subsidies. Pilot programs suffered that fate showing some success. Santa Monica is director of Housing and economic development and Diego says that's incentive to do more.

Speaker 1: 01:35 Would like to now expand this program 10 fold. We're taking our program from $200,000 a year to $2 million a year. That's a huge ramp up.

Speaker 2: 01:46 The city council backed the idea and Santa Monica will expand the program early next year. Eagle says he anticipates the city. We'll be able to help 250 to 400 senior households with the additional money.

Speaker 1: 01:59 What I'm pleased about and a bit surprised about is that we haven't received broader pushback from people that might say, how can you just give people money without strings attached? That's irresponsible.

Speaker 3: 02:11 I think when it comes to housing, people get it. People every day see other people struggling with housing. They see it in the most visible way, which is people living on the streets

Speaker 2: 02:22 that state Senator Scott Wiener, he represents San Francisco.

Speaker 3: 02:26 The everyone you know knows either a family member or a friend or has a neighbor, particularly seniors who they see struggling and they want to help. There's no real controversy around that.

Speaker 2: 02:37 Wiener points to the state's housing shortage. He supports rental subsidy programs for low income people to stay in their homes, especially seniors. State lawmakers have set aside $2 billion which cities and counties can use toward homeless services and emergency rental assistance in Los Angeles. Homeless Services Authority director Peter Lynn, applaud Santa Monica as rental subsidies, but he worries about longterm sustainability.

Speaker 4: 03:05 The test is going to be when we see a downturn or recession where we see reductions in tax revenues for municipalities. That's where the pressure on those kinds of programs comes very strongly.

Speaker 2: 03:17 Santa Monica is, Eagle is confident in the investment officials there have taken into account a potential recession. These types of approaches are becoming more prevalent, more realistic, and as I talked to people from other places, there's a lot of interest in it, and k, she remains grateful for the extra cash. It's just taken so much stress out of my life, being able to do the things that I need to do, like pay bills. It's a godsend. She says it helps her stay in this community. She loves in San Diego. I'm Amethyst Sharma.

Speaker 5: 04:00 [inaudible].

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Speaker 1: 00:00 Women dressed in white will be leading a march and rally in Balboa Park. Tomorrow it's the kickoff to a 100th anniversary celebration of American women winning the right to vote. The women's Museum of California is sponsoring the event, which will feature speakers on the history of the suffrage movement and challenges that still face women taking their equal part in the political process. Joining me is Ann Hoiberg. She's board president of the California Women's museum and Anne, welcome. Oh Maureen, it's wonderful to be here. Now the 100th anniversary of women's suffrage is really next year when the states ratified the 19th amendment to the constitution, but the actual amendment was approved by Congress in the summer of 1919 so my question is, will this be a year long celebration at the women's museum?

Speaker 2: 00:52 Yes, it will be a year long celebration of the hundredth anniversary of the 19th amendment.

Speaker 1: 00:59 Can you give us some of the highlights of how women in San Diego joined in the long battle for women's right to vote?

Speaker 2: 01:05 Well here in California, we had a women's suffrage on our ballot twice first in 1896 and Susan B, Anthony thought it was so important that California come on board. She ran the campaign here in California. She actually came to San Diego and it was standing room only one. She spoke at the Methodist Church and then the next day, Flora Kimball had a luncheon in her home, a national city. So it was a big deal here in San Diego. Susan B. Anthony was here. That was 1896 it went down to defeat. In 1911 Dr Charlotte Baker headed the campaign and she was determined, even though she was an obstetrician, Dr Charlotte Baker believed that women should have the right to vote. So she was determined and headed the campaign here. And it won in 1911 and I think it was because Dr Charlotte Baker and her cadre of suffered just insisted that men vote for women getting the right to vote.

Speaker 1: 02:10 And, and she was from here in San Diego, is that right?

Speaker 2: 02:13 Well actually she and her husband, Dr Fred Baker, moved here in 1888 no, they were from Massachusetts, I believe. Our Maryland, two doctors arriving in San Diego. Can you imagine how thrilled everyone was here was about such an amazing thing, two doctors at once. She was not in the greatest health, so it was important for her to be an a mile climate.

Speaker 1: 02:40 How did women respond to the responsibility of being able to vote

Speaker 2: 02:45 well, that was a concern, particularly of Carrie Chapman, Catt and Carrie Chapman. Catt founded the League of women voters and she believed once women were given the right to vote, that it was important that an organization such as the League would help women realize the importance of voting and to know what the issues are. And so that's what the league has been doing and the league celebrates its hundredth anniversary next year also. Well, tell me what's happening at tomorrow's March and rally in Balboa Park? Well, we're going to start out with some music by Bodhi tree concerts and they're going to sing songs of suffrage and that will be from four 45 until five then at five o'clock I'll give a brief summary, even though it took 72 years for women to get the right to vote in the United States. I'll give a brief history of that. Then I'm going to turn it over to Cheryl Mallory Johnson and she had the 1619 project here in San Diego and I've asked her to speak about, well what happened to black women, even though all women in the United States, we're granted the right to vote in 1920 what about black women?

Speaker 2: 04:16 What about black women in the south? We know they weren't able to vote, but what is that history? So she'll bring us up to date on that. And I've also asked Margo poor us to speak about the Latina community. What about Latino women? So she'll give us an update on that and we'll also talk about native Americans and the Chinese immigrants. And you'll be talking about not just the history of women of color, but also the challenges that they still face in claiming their, their full right to vote. That's exactly correct. And we'll have some impersonators. I've asked, uh, Judy Foreman from the big kitchen to be Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and she's an expert on Elizabeth Katy stem. I've asked Shirley feral to be Susan B. Anthony, my good friend Beverly Hudson will be sojourner truth, talking about her work, insisting that black women were able to vote. And we'll also have flora Kimball from national city and Dr Charlotte Baker Plus Carrie Chapman Catt. So it'll be a full 45 minutes of presentations and performances. And when does the event start again? It starts at four 45 with Bodhi tree concert singing songs from suffrage. And then we'll start at five o'clock with presentations. I have been speaking with an Hoiberg board president of the California women's museum. And thank you so much. Oh, thank you. It's been such fun. Thanks.

Speaker 3: 06:01 [inaudible].

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KPBS Midday Edition is a daily talk show hosted by Maureen Cavanaugh and Jade Hindmon, keeping San Diegans in the know on everything from politics to the arts.