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STATEMENT FROM DEE MURFF WHO FILED DISCRIMINATION CHARGES AGAINST THE GUADALUPE CULTURAL ARTS CENTER THIS WEEK


I've taken the liberty of editing the complete statement because of length, but I'm impressed with Dee's courage and coraje. May you too fight back, it's the only way.


This lawsuit represents more than the damages/injuries inflicted upon me. What I want people to remember is that there are 12 women and 2 men who were also displaced. The Chairman of the Board, Vice Chairman, and the rest of the Board failed to act responsibly; choosing instead to justify the illegal behavior of the President of the organization. The Board of Directors deliberately retaliated against me instead of protecting me and my civil rights. In fact my complaints were ignored because I am brown and I am a woman.

The tax payers and citizens who have provided support to the GCAC for over 25 years have also been robbed of classes, performances and events that enrich our community and preserve our Chicano/a culture. The loss during this period is immeasurable.
The greatest injury however has been to the countless civil rights advocates who battle to ensure that employees’ women in particular, would not have to endure sexual harassment and then suffer retaliation for reporting it.

I am saddened when I think about what has happened to the Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center, once considered a model on the national level as a cultural institution. I am saddened when I think about the hopeful young children that have had their violins silenced because the President canceled the Mariachi classes. Gone is the Guadalupe Bookstore which helped promote local and regional authors and artists. Gone are all of the artistic directors that helped breathe life into the Guadalupe all gone except for one and how she survived is beyond me.

We expect a verdict that will send a clear message to those who still believe that females can continue to be treated like second class citizens. We expect to hold the Board of Directors accountable for affirming the actions of the President instead of defending my civil rights when I cried out and rather than protecting me; silenced, humiliated and escorted me out for my own protection.

Dolores Zapata Murff

November 27, 2007

credits:Women Resisting in Oaxaca http://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.genderracepower.com/wp-content/uploads/2006



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