GRANADA HILLS – The Armenian Youth Federation North Valley Chapter’s “Know Your Rights” forum attracted Armenians and non-Armenians alike in a highly informative discussion about basic civil rights and liberties on June 26.
“Considering the oppressive manner in which the rights of the Armenian people have been violated throughout history, this event had an immense symbolic value,” said AYF Central Executive member Sanan Shirinian regarding the importance of holding this forum. “The Armenian youth, especially members of the AYF, should be armed with the knowledge of what rights they possess even in our current, privileged American reality.”
The forum was held in the Granada Hills Armenian Cultural Center and featured long-tenured California Highway Patrol Officer Tang and former San Bernardino County District Attorney Garo Madenian as the two main speakers.
AYF Central Executive Chairperson Caspar Jivalagian introduces the night’s honorary speakers, C.H.P. Officer Tang and former San Bernardino County D.A. Garo Madenian.
Both speakers discussed a variety of issues that they deemed most pertinent to the youth, and particularly the Armenian youth, such as vehicle search and seizure rights, police questioning and response rights, protest rights, and how to speak to a police officer, among other things.
After each speaker finished their discussion, the floor was opened for the audience to ask the speakers questions about their rights and liberties.
As the forum came to a close, Madenian had this to say regarding the event: “It’s commendable that the AYF North Valley [Chapter] organized the ‘Know Your Rights’ event, and I was honored to be invited to speak about what to do if contacted by police, individuals’ rights, and lines that the police cannot cross.”
Founded in 1933, the Armenian Youth Federation is the largest and most influential Armenian American youth organization in the United States, working to advance the social, political, educational, and cultural awareness of Armenian-American youth.