This weekend, actress Eva Longoria received a Freedom Award. No, it was not a Free the Slaves Freedom Award, but an award from the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis, Tennessee, honoring contemporary humanitarians. (The Free the Slaves Freedom Awards are taking place November 7 in Los Angeles. Tickets are on sale right now!)
Longoria made reference to modern day slavery during her acceptance speech, saying that many migrant workers are exploited and enslaved on farms in the U.S.
“I couldn’t help but draw comparisons to my community which is the Latino community and the African American community, and how we are brothers and sisters in this fight, and how history is repeating itself,” she said. “I’m doing a documentary now, on child farm workers. Children as young as eight are in the fields picking cotton, picking fruits and vegetables and allowed to [do] this and it’s modern day slavery.”
Read how “Miguel” was enslaved on Florida’s orange farms, and how he found freedom with the Coalition for Immokalee Workers.
Longoria was honored alongside two very prestigious women: Dr. Wangari Maathi, founder of the environmental non-profit Green Belt Movement, and the first African woman to receive a Nobel Peace Prize, and Dr. Dorothy Cotton, a civil rights leader who played a pivotal role alongside Martin Luther King, Jr. during the Montgomery, Alabama bus boycott of the mid-’50s.
Watch video of Eva Longoria’s acceptance speech after the jump!