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HR-31 (2017-2018)

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Revised  May 08, 2017


House Resolution No. 31

Introduced by Assembly Member Low
(Coauthors: Assembly Members Chau, Chu, Muratsuchi, Nazarian, and Ting Ting, Acosta, Aguiar-Curry, Travis Allen, Arambula, Baker, Berman, Bigelow, Bloom, Bonta, Brough, Burke, Caballero, Calderon, Cervantes, Chávez, Chen, Chiu, Choi, Cooley, Cooper, Cunningham, Dababneh, Dahle, Daly, Eggman, Flora, Fong, Frazier, Friedman, Gallagher, Cristina Garcia, Eduardo Garcia, Gipson, Gloria, Gonzalez Fletcher, Gray, Grayson, Harper, Holden, Irwin, Jones-Sawyer, Kalra, Kiley, Lackey, Levine, Limón, Maienschein, Mathis, Mayes, McCarty, Melendez, Mullin, Obernolte, O’Donnell, Quirk, Quirk-Silva, Rendon, Reyes, Ridley-Thomas, Rodriguez, Rubio, Salas, Santiago, Steinorth, Mark Stone, Thurmond, Voepel, Waldron, Weber, and Wood)

April 19, 2017

Relative to California Chinese Railroad Workers Memorial Day.


HR 31, as introduced, Low.

WHEREAS, The 150th anniversary of the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad will take place on May 10, 2019; and
WHEREAS, The Transcontinental Railroad was one of the most remarkable engineering feats of the 19th century; and
WHEREAS, The construction of the Transcontinental Railroad took six years and stretched for nearly 2,000 miles; and
WHEREAS, The completion of the Transcontinental Railroad facilitated commerce and reduced cross-country travel times from six months to a single week; and
WHEREAS, Nearly 12,000 Chinese immigrants were employed in the construction of the Transcontinental Railroad, comprising more than 80 percent of the workforce of Central Pacific Railroad Company; and
WHEREAS, The Chinese railroad workers were considered indispensable by their foremen and were respected for their work ethic and discipline; and
WHEREAS, The Chinese railroad workers set a world record by laying 10 miles of railroad track in just one workday; and
WHEREAS, The Chinese railroad workers were given the most difficult, dangerous jobs and were paid lower wages than other railroad workers; and
WHEREAS, Nearly 1,200 Chinese railroad workers died from work accidents, avalanches, and explosions while working in the Sierra Nevada Mountains; and
WHEREAS, The United States Department of Labor has inducted the Chinese railroad workers into the Labor Hall of Honor for their courage in organizing in pursuit of fair wages and safe working conditions; and
WHEREAS, Through their fight against discrimination, the Chinese railroad workers set an example for the millions of Asian Americans who came to the United States after them; and
WHEREAS, Both the descendants of these workers and the wider Asian American community view the sacrifices of the Chinese railroad workers as being integral to the creation of the vibrant and growing Asian American community that exists throughout the country today; and
WHEREAS, The Chinese railroad workers continue to have a profound, positive impact on the American way of life by advancing the ideals of equal opportunity and the dignity of work for everyone; now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the Assembly of the State of California, That the Assembly recognizes and honors the Chinese railroad workers who labored from 1865 to 1869 to build the Transcontinental Railroad by designating May 10, 2017, and each May 10 thereafter, as California Chinese Railroad Workers Memorial Day; and be it further
Resolved, That the Chief Clerk of the Assembly transmit copies of this resolution to the Speaker of the Assembly, the President pro Tempore of the Senate, and the Governor of the State of California.

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