Made in L.A.
Patricia Weng

     The movie Made in L.A. shows three Latino women named Lupe, Maria, and Maura, who defined solidarity by going on strike and boycotting their employer. They organized their sweatshop co-workers to boycott against the company “Forever 21” because of its unfair labor practices. Like many undocumented immigrants, these workers lacked English skills and legal documentation. They often found themselves working at the sweatshop for 10 to 14 hours per day yet still had to struggle to make ends meet. They were continuously underpaid and mistreated. Soon they learned that undocumented workers have rights just like any other workers in the United States; as a result, they started a campaign to boycott the retailer, “Forever 21.” They got the attention of the media and presented a news story that was worth reporting. They also called TV channels and got interviews. They demanded pay for back-wages, a safer working environment, and other benefits that they felt they were entitled to. Throughout the movie, they demonstrated that they would never give up and would continue to fight for their rights till the end. Even though these three brave women underwent dramatic conflicts and discouragement during their three-year-long campaign, they were determined to win the case against their employer. Along with other garment workers, they joined together at the L.A. Garment Worker Center to take a stand for their rights and make their voices heard around the nation and the world. This film illustrates that people “who unite together will never be defeated” or broken. Each of these three women became strong, hopeful, enthusiastic, and important as the campaign dragged on for three long years. They continued to protest and appeal their case to the higher court. Finally, at the end of the film, the court ruled in their favor and the retailer “Forever 21”, agreed to pay back-wages and other benefits. The success of these three women who worked supportively together shows that, with teamwork and unity, everything is possible: “Si Se Puede.”