Welcome back to "YC Spotlight," our new weekly series highlighting the exciting, enlightening media that gets created at the Youth Channel in the MNN El Barrio Firehouse Community Media Center.
Today, we turn our attention to "Young Lords Way," a short feature covering a street naming ceremony that gave recognition to the Young Lord's Party, a movement in 1960s New York based on a mission much like that of El Barrio Firehouse: to engage in activities that help meet the demands and needs of the community. In December of 1969, a militant and self-determined group called the Young Lord’s Party unapologetically decided to take over one of the first Spanish Methodist church on 111th street and Lexington to provide a free breakfast program and healthcare clinic for its community.
From the YC:
From campaigning to remove trash from East Harlem’s Streets, taking over Tuberculosis trucks for much-needed check-ups, to confronting head-on abusive land lords and police officers, the Young Lord’s Party helped established a groundbreaking foundation for communities of color to come.
On Saturday, July 26th, the historical movement received support and admiration when the Young Lord’s Party was given recognition for the critical actions and ideas that it helped established. In honor of their first action, 111th street and Lexington was renamed to Young Lord’s Way. Recognizing the social and political work that the Young Lord’s party established, it is finally due after such a long time.
With long-time leaders and activists in the Young Lord’s Party movement, the street was filled with reunions of old friendships and camaraderie. Political leaders such as Charlie Rangel, Bill Perkins, and Melissa Mark-Viverito were present to honor the unveiling of the street. Long-time activists and leaders in the movement also included Juan F. Ramos, Iris Morales, Carmen Pietri Diaz, and Gloria Rodriguez among others.
Watch the video for excellent coverage of the event and amazing historical footage!