Date of Graduation

Spring 5-16-2024

Document Access

Project/Capstone - Global access

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Human Rights Education (HRE)


School of Education


International and Multicultural Education (IME)

First Advisor

Jessie Blundell

Second Advisor

David Donahue


This study examines the crises farmworkers are experiencing along the Monterey Bay Central Coast. It analyzes and reviews housing insecurity, deficit to basic needs, and the environmental impact of storms and pesticides exposure. In January of 2023, the central coast experienced an immense amount of rain, atmospheric rivers, and a levee break that the Salinas and Pajaro Valley communities' infrastructure could not handle. These storms caused even more financial and economic peril for the already struggling farmworkers and their children. This research aims to highlight the importance of farmworking families in the community and what social barriers they face. Information about the housing crises and environmental impact of climate change in the area is utilized to exemplify how farmworkers and their children's livelihoods are impacted. It is important to state that pesticide usage is a significant issue in the farmworker community, and it is slightly mentioned within this paper but is not the central focus.

Data regarding the deficit to basic needs and community resources are also highlighted in this research. This research uses a human rights lens by analyzing the social injustices taking place within Monterey and Santa Cruz County. A critical race theory and Community Cultural Wealth lens is utilized to further analyze collected data and research. In total, there are four chapters to this study. The original iteration of this study was a conference proposal that I attended in October of 2023.

Since presenting at the conference this research has expanded and evolved. The original presentation was created during a time that I had not collected data, but was presented to inform conference attendees and get their feedback. One goal for this research is for it to remain accessible and useful for researchers and readers. This is an example that conducting research is not a linear experience but a fluid and flexible one. I want readers to know and understand you will not know everything or have all of the answers to your research at the beginning. It begins with an idea, a passion, or an interest and blossoms into thorough research over time. The final product of the presentation explains the three intersecting crises affecting the farmworker community with data anaylsis included.

Chapter one includes the description of the conference, theme of the conference, submission guidelines, conference submission, theoretical framework, significance of the research, and positionality statement. Chapter two provides a breakdown of the intersecting and ongoing crises, and an understanding of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights Violations,. Chapter three comprises the methodology used to interview two leaders in the community who work to meet farmworkers’ basic needs, and the findings and analysis of those interviews. Chapter four reviews the purpose and preparation for the presentation and feedback and connections. It also contains recommendations for action and recommendations for future research, and the conclusion. The appendix can be located at the very end of this research, it contains the presentation powerpoint, interview questions, housing costs, feedback and revisions, and how that feedback is utilized.