Raymond Meza, candidate for California’s 34th Congressional District, is an organizer. Raymond has been a strong advocate for working people and the middle class from his youth to his current work at SEIU Local 721 and believes the best way to advocate for social justice is to build strong support for fundamental rights and values. Most recently working on the Fight for $15 campaign, Raymond helped to lead the innovative campaign that not only resulted in the adoption of a $15 minimum wage in cities, counties, and eventually the State of California, but also successfully reframed the debate and refocused the nation on economic inequality and the need to address widespread economic insecurity.
As far back as college, Raymond organized students to achieve tuition freezes a decade before today’s campaign for free public higher education, access to higher education for undocumented immigrants long before state and national-level leaders recognized the need, and increased academic outreach to underrepresented communities in the aftermath of Proposition 209’s devastating impact on students of color at the University of California. Throughout the years, Raymond has organized diverse groups around a broad range of issues with a steadfast commitment to equity, opportunity, and progressive policies to lift up workers and marginalized communities.
Raymond was born and raised in Montecito Heights in Northeast Los Angeles. He is the third generation of his family to live in the same working class neighborhood after his grandmother moved to Los Angeles during the Great Depression in search of economic opportunity for her family. She saved and purchased a home in 1956 that is still in the Meza family today. Raymond’s passion for social justice was cultivated in the shared community values he grew up in while attending Eagle Rock Junior High School and John Marshall High School. He came out as gay at age 15 and was inspired by the compassion, love, and acceptance he received from his family and his community to become a strong advocate for others.
We need to send an organizer to work within Congress and with advocacy groups to protect the federal programs, services, funding, and accomplishments most important to our diverse community. Raymond will work tirelessly to build coalitions inside and outside of Congress to advocate for the fundamental values shared across our community and across our country--to advance economic opportunity and social equality for people of color, women, workers, immigrants, students, people with disabilities, of different faiths, LGBT Americans, veterans--for ALL Americans.