Interviewee: Lydia Cruz
Interviewer: Marie Heyda
Date: November 18-21, 1977
Lydia Cruz, a Puerto Rican woman living in New Jersey for 25 years, attended the conference as a delegate and was in full support of the IWY planks. Interview includes discussion of the discrimination Cruz experienced since arriving in the United States, including economic discrimination; Cruz’s experience as a committeewoman; and Puerto Ricans running for office in New Jersey.
Lydia Cruz: (Unintelligible at 0:02) For me has been a great pleasure to be a delegate for the conference of women here in Texas. It really, you know, like the plan, the proposed plan, even though I understand it’s a long way to go. I agreed totally with the whole plan because what’s my thinking for all my years as I – the fact that I came here and I cast a vote for the plan has been a great pleasure.
Marie Heyda: Yeah. Now you are Puerto Rican but you live in New Jersey, as does Lucy?
LC: Yes, but I live in New Jersey for 25 years.
MH: Oh yes. Have you felt discrimination because of being Puerto Rican and because you’re a woman very much?
LC: Very hard, got under my skin.
MH: Um-hum. Really hurts, doesn’t it?
LC: That’s right.
MH: And it hurts economically, too.
LC: That’s right.
MH: The good jobs, they want you to take a lower wage scale.
LC: Yes. Like I say that is the long way I understand because it’s only a proposed plan and I know that, how the Congress keep it back and forth, but at least it’s a beginning and a step, and I will be watching. But politically that, this plan be implemented.
MH: Um-hum. You think you can influence the New Jersey state government much?
LC: Very much so because I’m very involved in politics.
MH: Oh good, good for you! How are you involved in politics?
LC: I do, be involved in registration complaints –
MH: In the political party –
LC: – yeah, in the political party that I belong.
MH: Uh-huh. Do you run for office?
LC: I was very low, I was a committeewoman once.
MH: Are some Puerto Ricans running for office in New Jersey?
LC: Yes. Yes, they have been.
MH: Yeah, well thank you very much, Lydia.
End of Interview