Federal Judge Declares IAOVC Has Standing to Sue in West Orange Lawsuit Over Columbus Monument


IAOVC Federal Columbus Litigation Moves Closer to Success


IAOVC Columbus Litigation - Important Step Forward

IAOVC Landmark Federal Litigation Against West Orange, NJ Moves Closer to Success

NORTVALE, NJ, US, May 3, 2023/EINPresswire.com/ -- The Italian American One Voice Coalition (“IAOVC”), America’s largest independent Italian American anti-bias educational organization received notification that its litigation against West Orange, NJ for removing the Columbus Monument moves a step closer to success.

"We are extremely proud to report that the Federal court has just declared that IAOVC has standing to sue on behalf of its members. THIS IS A WATERSHED MOMENT IN ITALIAN AMERICAN HISTORY!", stated Frank Lorenzo, IAOVC Vice President on receiving the news about IAOVC's legal standing.

In September of 2020, during the height of the COVID pandemic, a team of IAOVC members along with volunteer attorneys and supporters gathered remotely to formulate a legal strategy to save Columbus monuments across America. This was in response to dozens, if not hundreds of requests from Italian Americans across the country to stop the attacks on the cultural heritage of Italian Americans. Social media postings at the time had many postings that read "Where are all the Italian Americans?" This was felt by many as the widespread destruction of Columbus statues and monuments across the country happened regularly. "We could no longer wait for others to act and decided it was up to us at IAOVC to take action," stated Lorenzo. "That is exactly what we did!"

After years of watching Columbus statues and monuments being vandalized and wrongfully removed, IAOVC decided enough was enough and filed the first landmark Federal lawsuit against West Orange NJ for the wrongful removal of a Columbus monument which was revered in the West Orange, NJ community. (US District Court, District of NJ/Civil Action No.: 2:20-cv-12650/Italian American One Voice Coalition, Inc. v. Township of West Orange and Robert D. Parisi, Mayor)

Lorenzo continued, "Many in the community were fearful to bring lawsuits to reinstate Columbus monuments for fear of retaliation by local officials, a lack of funding or the amount of work required to take on such a task. We are proud to say that the IAOVC lead the way by filing the first landmark Federal lawsuit of its kind. As a result of this lawsuit, the community saw that it was possible to fight back legally to defend the civil rights of Italian Americans. Since we filed this lawsuit in September of 2020, other organizations followed our lead with great success."

IAOVC is different from all other Italian American organizations in that its sole focus and objective is to foster education to fight bias, stereotyping and discrimination against Italian Americans. IAOVC is an IRS-Registered 501(c)3 non-profit.

To support IAOVC’s efforts at defending and educating about Columbus and Italian American civil rights visit iaovc.org/donate.

IAOVC membership is open to individuals and all Italian American organizations to join together as a coalition defending and celebrating Italian American heritage and culture. To join visit iaovc.org/membership.

Andre DiMino
Italian American ONE VOICE Coalition
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