CA Gov't Code Section 8721

The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:


Beginning in 1929, government authorities and certain private sector entities in California and throughout the United States undertook an aggressive program to forcibly remove persons of Mexican ancestry from the United States.


In California alone, approximately 400,000 American citizens and legal residents of Mexican ancestry were forced to go to Mexico.


In total, it is estimated that two million people of Mexican ancestry were forcibly relocated to Mexico, approximately 1.2 million of whom had been born in the United States, including the State of California.


Throughout California, massive raids were conducted on Mexican-American communities, resulting in the clandestine removal of thousands of people, many of whom were never able to return to the United States, their country of birth.


These raids also had the effect of coercing thousands of people to leave the country in the face of threats and acts of violence.


These raids targeted persons of Mexican ancestry, with authorities and others indiscriminately characterizing these persons as “illegal aliens” even when they were United States citizens or permanent legal residents.


Authorities in California and other states instituted programs to wrongfully remove persons of Mexican ancestry and secure transportation arrangements with railroads, automobiles, ships, and airlines to effectuate the wholesale removal of persons out of the United States to Mexico.


As a result of these illegal activities, families were forced to abandon, or were defrauded of, personal and real property, which often was sold by local authorities as “payment” for the transportation expenses incurred in their removal from the United States to Mexico.


As a further result of these illegal activities, United States citizens and legal residents were separated from their families and country and were deprived of their livelihood and United States constitutional rights.


As a further result of these illegal activities, United States citizens were deprived of the right to participate in the political process guaranteed to all citizens, thereby resulting in the tragic denial of due process and equal protection of the laws.
Last Updated

Aug. 19, 2023

§ 8721’s source at ca​.gov