On the primary day of Hispanic Heritage Month 2020 in the U.S., the present Doodle observes Puerto Rican social liberties pioneer and entrepreneur Felicitas Mendez. Close by her significant other Gonzalo, Felicitas assisted with leading and win the great claim Mendez v. Westminster, which in 1946 brought about the primary US government court administering against state funded school isolation—right around 10 years before Brown v. Leading body of Education.
Felicitas Mendez was conceived Felicita Gómez Martínez on February 5, 1916 in the town of Juncos, Puerto Rico. She moved with her folks to the American Southwest as a juvenile, and the family in the long run joined the Latino people group of agrarian specialists in California’s Orange County. In 1935, she wedded Gonzalo Mendez, a Mexican outsider who worked with her dad in the fields. Together, the couple opened a local bistro and later dealt with an effective ranch in the modest community of Westminster.
In 1944, the Mendez’s three kids were declined enlistment at a neighborhood state funded school dependent on their identity and skin shading. Reluctant to acknowledge this bad form, the couple chose to retaliate. With the claim Mendez v. Westminster, Gonzalo Mendez and four different guardians sued the Westminster school area and a few others to request a conclusion to the isolation of Hispanic understudies. Felicitas Mendez composed panels to help the case and ably dealt with the Mendez’s homestead all alone, acquiring record benefits that assisted with financing the claim.
On February 18, 1946, the government locale court reasoned that the school areas were disregarding Mexican-American residents’ entitlement to approach assurance under the law and decided for the Mendez family and different guardians. Attested by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals the next year, this milestone choice straightforwardly made ready for a law that required the incorporation of all California government funded schools that very year, just as the Brown v. Leading body of Education Supreme Court choice that managed the isolation of state funded schools unlawful seven years after the fact.
In 2011, Mendez’s girl Sylvia was granted the Presidential Medal of Freedom—the United States’ most noteworthy regular citizen honor—in acknowledgment of her and her folks’ function in the Westminster v. Mendez case and her deep rooted commitment to social liberties and training that followed.
Much obliged to you, Felicitas Mendez and family, for assisting with driving the route toward an all the more simply future.