Local and Community News
Los Angeles: Memorial for Lincoln Park Wins Preliminary OK
March 25, 2003
On March 20, parks officials unanimously approved the construction of an AIDS memorial in Lincoln Park in northeast Los Angeles, provided its sponsors meet several conditions. Longtime Eastside organizer Richard Zaldivar was thrilled by Thursday's vote by the Los Angeles Recreation and Parks Commission. "It's overwhelming," said Zaldivar.Adapted from:
Zaldivar has been working for nine years on "the Wall -- Las Memorias," a project designed to raise awareness about the AIDS epidemic within the Latino community. The memorial would consist of eight panels, two containing the names of people who have died of AIDS and six containing art, set in an open garden that includes benches, a rose garden, a walking path and a sculpture.
The project, which has generated controversy within the local community, must be reviewed by the mayor and city attorney and will need approval by the City Council. Park officials also require proof from Zaldivar's group that they have secured the funds needed to build the monument. The vote allows the project to continue through the approval process while the group completes the requirements set by parks officials.
Zaldivar's group will have to work quickly, however. A $344,000 appropriation from California's general fund, most of the group's money, mandates that the project be constructed and all funds be spent by June 30, or they risk losing the funds.
Opponents of the memorial, who argue that Lincoln Park is an inappropriate place for a monument with such a somber message, plan to continue to fight its construction. "You cannot take the park away from the children," said Mary Luz Pacheco, a Lincoln Heights Neighborhood Council member. "You can't take from the living to give to the dead."
Los Angeles Times
03.21.03; Li Fellers
This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.