Serve the People — Los Angeles Profile

“From the masses to the masses,” reads a cover logo located on STP-LA’s website.

Serve the People — Los Angeles (STP-LA) is a Maoist-inspired chapter of the Serve the People organization, a nationwide revolutionary collective active in five other US cities as of September 2017. Formed in April 2015, STP-LA is based in the Boyle Heights neighborhood of Los Angeles, California where it operates as a “community service and political empowerment” group, according to its website.

STP-LA was created by Red Guards — Los Angeles, a Maoist SMO that operates in the same neighborhood. However, STP-LA is not exclusively communist nor Maoist, a representative of the group told GeoMovements. Although the collective does have Maoist members, it is not solely led by them.

Servir al Pueblo (Serve the People) activists in Boyle Heights, Los Angeles, California. Image via The Guardian.

According to the representative, the mission of STP-LA is “to organize and develop the masses to build revolutionary people power.”

STP-LA does not shy away from confronting the status quo. It is well-known for hosting local pro-immigrant rights and community revolution-themed events. The group also hosts bi-weekly food and clothing distribution events in the Boyle Heights neighborhood.

On September 2, 2017, STP-LA’s Twitter account published “Points of Unity,” an 11-point manifesto of its sociopolitical views. Detailed in the document are its anti-deportation and pro-liberation stances among other non-traditional positions.

Due to the very large Latinx population in Los Angeles, STP-LA also communicates in Spanish, giving it a significant advantage over most SMOs in the United States.