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Indybay Feature
Sat Jun 16 2012 (Updated 06/17/12)
A Closer Look at One of the Santa Cruz Eleven
Protesting Economic Inequities: 19-Year-Old Activist Desiree Foster
Desiree Foster, the youngest of the Santa Cruz Eleven, was arrested on February 8th as she and her boyfriend were leaving her home on her way to the Santa Cruz Courthouse in an attempt to quash her arrest warrant by agreeing to appear in court on a certain date. Instead, she spent the next nine hours sitting on plastic seating watching a deputy-controlled television set, having been arrested for two felony counts, conspiracy and vandalism, and two misdemeanor counts of trespass, with bail set at $5,000. Her mother, suffering from cancer, attempted to raise the $500 to bail out her daughter, when, inexplicably, Desiree was released on her own recognizance.

But the pressure of the felony charges, the financial instability of her family, and the fear and dread that she faced in dealing with her mother’s cancer, proved to be too much. Desiree took an overdose of pills and wound up in Dominican Hospital, treated for a suicide attempt.

Desiree, a passionate and idealistic young woman, had found her voice attending Occupy Santa Cruz general assemblies, and volunteered for many tasks. At home, she and her mother struggled to pay bills. Desiree is her mother’s primary caregiver, as she undergoes chemotherapy. Desiree, like many in her generation, knew that something is inherently wrong with our system if she and her mother had to struggle to keep a roof over their heads while her mom was being treated for cancer. She lived in a world where with or without a college education, young people could not find good jobs.

Read More | Previous Coverage: The Steamroller Slouches into Summer | Support the Santa Cruz Eleven
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