The Seattle City Council may become the twelfth city across the nation to call for an end to the Cuba embargo. Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda (Position 8, Citywide), Chair of the Council’s Housing, Health, Energy and Workers’ Rights Committee, together with the U.S. Women and Cuba Collaboration organizer and local labor/civil rights leader, Cindy Domingo, will introduce a resolution in Full Council August 12 to support ending the embargo against Cuba.
The U.S. embargo on Cuba has been in place since the 1960s and has resulted in economic hardships to the Cuban people as well as a lack of access to life saving medicine for U.S. residents. Although a majority of Americans support ending the embargo, the current U.S. administration has harshened restrictions of U.S. travel to Cuba, no longer allowing popular “people-to-people” exchanges as of June 5th. Already, eleven other cities (Detroit, Michigan; Richmond, Berkeley, Sacramento and Oakland in California; Helena, Montana; Minneapolis and St. Paul, in Minneapolis; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Brookline, Massachusetts; and Hartford, Connecticut) have passed similar resolutions calling for an end to the blockade.
“Cuba has taught me that a better world is possible when a society puts its resources into empowering its people to create social change and addressing their basic needs in order to achieve that goal,” said Domingo, Chair of the U.S. Women and Cuba Collaboration, who has taken almost 200 people to Cuba on educational delegations since 1999.
“The embargo and the intensification of the extraterritorial implementation of the blockade fly in the face of international law and the Charter of the United Nations (UN),” said Mosqueda. “The UN has repeatedly said that the almost six-decades-long blockade continues to violate the rights of Cubans to self-determination knowledge, and has limited the residents of the United States from engaging in cross-cultural diplomacy, business transactions, and access to ground-breaking life-saving medical advances in Cuba. It’s the epitome of a lose-lose policy, and I am proud Seattle may be one of a dozen cities to call for an end to the embargo.”
The Seattle-based national organization U.S. Women and Cuba Collaboration and the Seattle-Cuba Friendship Committee have organized cultural and educational trips to and from Cuba, strengthening relationships through issues such as human rights, women’s rights, and racial and economic justice.
The Council’s resolution directs Seattle’s Office of Intergovernmental Relations to deliver copies of the resolution to the President of the United States of America, and Washington State Legislators and other officials.
About Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda: Mosqueda fights every day to build an economy that works for all of us, make sure we can afford to live in the city where we work, and protect the rights of every member of our City. She has dedicated her career to creating healthier communities and amplifying the voices of our working families. Mosqueda brings years of experience working with labor unions and working families to City Council and most recently served as the Political and Strategic Campaign Director of the Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO. Teresa is a third-generation Mexican-American, the daughter of educators and social justice advocates.
About Cindy Domingo: Domingo is an active leader and organizer of local, national and international communities, coming from a strong family of activists in Seattle’s Filipino Community. Following the assassination of her brother Silme Domingo, Domingo spearheaded a committee that sought justice from the assassination, which ultimately led to a $25 million landmark federal court judgement. Domingo has since been active in the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum, the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom, the Church Council of Greater Seattle and the Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance. Today, Domingo is Chief of Staff of King County Councilmember Larry Gossett, and is the Co-Founder and Chair of the Seattle-based U.S. Women and Cuba Collaboration.