The murder of seven farmworkers in Half Moon Bay have shattered our hearts—and an entire community. Nineteen families were directly impacted, all members of Asian and Latino communities. As immigrants and farmworkers, these families are among the most vulnerable and unprotected members of our communities. The healing process will be long and hard—and it is our responsibility to support them and the frontline leaders that serve them.
Since the shootings, we’ve learned that the workers impacted in this tragedy thought they had to come to work the day after the shooting. Many were disoriented and confused – unable to comprehend that their co-workers had been killed. Many of the families impacted lived on the farm where the shootings took place. It is now a crime scene and these families have been uprooted and are living in motels. Rather than being able to focus on healing, we’ve been told the workers are concerned about what each of us would be concerned about – their jobs, income, and livelihood.
The nonprofit infrastructure is limited in Half Moon Bay, particularly for the Asian community. Responding to this tragedy has been taxing and difficult. Organizations like Ayudando Latinos A Sonar (ALAS) have supported farmworkers in the Half Moon Bay community since 2011, including the Asian and Latino workers at Mountain Mushroom Farms. ALAS has established the Half Moon Bay Strong Fund to support the families of victims, and the broader farmworker community. Because the region has no Asian-led social service organizations, other counties have diverted staff to Half Moon Bay to provide interpretation, translation, and in-language counseling. The Asian Pacific Fund has established the Half Moon Bay Support Fund to cover the cost of these organizations to provide in-language services to the Chinese farmworker victims and families.
The Asian Pacific Fund and Latino Community Foundation stand together in our grief, and our commitment to support each other. We support organizations responding to this tragedy together—and invite you to join us. With Latino and Asian communities making up more than 54% of the California population, we are stronger together.
Jacqueline Martinez Garcel
CEO, Latino Community Foundation
Carolyn Wang Kong
President & Executive Director, Asian Pacific Fund