The historic organization continues creating institutions in response to systemic discrimination against minorities
By José A. Delgado/ENDI
Washington – Fifty years after its founding, the leadership of the Puerto Rican Cultural Center of Chicago remains committed to the community’s determination to create parallel institutions as a way to survive and respond to systemic discrimination.
Its history has been a model of resistance to promote “self-determination, self-actualization, and self-sufficiency.”
“It emerged as a phenomenon that already existed in Latin America: organizations created by the community to meet its needs,” said Professor José López Rivera, Executive Director of the Center and one of its founders.
The Center, whose name honors the memory of Nationalist leader and poet Juan Antonio Corretjer, was officially created in 1973. The movement that led to its founding took off on June 12, 1966, when a police officer shot Puerto Rican Aracelis Cruz on the same historic Division Street during Chicago’s first Puerto Rican Parade.
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