Activists plan weekend 'buy out' for SJ street vendors attacked in separate incidents

The "San Jose Street Vendor Buy Out" will be held on Sunday to support two vendors recently targeted in attacks.

Amanda del Castillo Image
Thursday, February 23, 2023
SJ street vendors attacked in separate incidents get viral support
Organizers are mobilizing to bring a "San Jose Street Vendor Buy Out" to the city on Sunday to support two vendors recently targeted in attacks.

SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) -- Recent viral videos captured two separate assaults on street vendors in San Jose. The attacks are motivating activists to get involved. Come Sunday, there will be a cookout of sorts, in support of the two victims who were targeted last week.

Organizers are mobilizing to bring a "San Jose Street Vendor Buy Out" to the city on Sunday afternoon.

MORE: California bill aims to help street food vendors by changing retail code

Alex Enamorado, a longtime street vendor activist and event organizer told ABC7 News, "During these times for a street vendor, it's traumatic. So I think they deserve a couple of days off, they don't have paid leave or anything like that. So it's part of the process that we have."

It's a process he's found success in, describing the crowds that came out for a similar event in support of the San Diego vendor who was harassed by a group of college students.

Back in San Jose, video showed street vendor Carlos Sanchez being taunted and threatened by a man with a baseball bat outside of Intex Auto Parts.

RELATED: Video shows bat-wielding auto shop employee attacking, threatening San Jose street vendor

A video taken by the victim and shared on TikTok shows the employee carrying a bat while demanding the street vendor employee to leave the area.

Days earlier, video captured by concert goer Kim Lara, showed vendor Saul Reconco being brutally attacked from behind and knocked unconscious outside the SAP Center.

"It's been a lot," Reconco described. "Because there are a lot of people there to support, even with some money, people with their pray, with the wishes. That's something that I didn't know is gonna be happening."

RELATED: Video shows street vendor attacked from behind, knocked unconscious outside of SAP Center

Video shared with ABC7 News shows a violent attack on a street vendor outside the SAP Center in San Jose.

Reconco and Sanchez will serve visitors at the site where Sanchez was attacked, along Old Bayshore Highway in San Jose, beginning Sunday at 1 p.m. until they sell out.

"You're going to show up, try their food, there's going to be music," Enamorado said. "You can tip the vendors, get to know them, and just have a celebration for them."

He said Angel Ortiz and the Centenarios are donating their time to provide entertainment for everyone, Armando's Restaurant and Bar will be accepting donations on behalf of the two vendors, and a gardening company will be donating their time and effort to clean up the area.

"And we're having other businesses jump on board," he explained.

All in support of the two men whose traumatic experiences were caught on-camera and quickly went viral.

The shock is still settling in for many, including unaffiliated Veggielution, which runs a food entrepreneurship training program for East San Jose residents

VIDEO: 'Disgusting' egg attack on street vendor selling face masks caught on camera

Authorities are investigating after a suspect was captured on video throwing an egg at a street vendor in South L.A.

"A lot of the entrepreneurs that we work with in our training program are women," Veggielution's Emily Schwing told ABC7 News. "And so this is definitely an issue that does come up. If they were to go out on their own, to be selling their food, what kind of risk does this is put them at?"

Schwing shared the group's support behind Sunday's event, "To just raise awareness and to bring visibility and to build community around these food entrepreneurs, who again, are out there, trying to make money and piece money together for their families."

The man accused of attacking Sanchez has been arrested and has since put out a formal apology for his actions.

Reconco hopes the same can soon be said for the man who assaulted him.

"The only thing I can say, there's a lot of crazy people on the street and we don't know when we gonna find one," Reconco said.

Beyond the Venmo account which ABC7 News previously shared, there is now a verified GoFundMe campaign that was launched on Reconco's behalf. Click here to be redirected.

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