NALIP Joins National Hispanic Leadership Agenda

At its March 26th Board meeting, the National Hispanic Leadership Agenda (NHLA) approved the admission of four new member organizations: the American GI Forum. Casa de Esperanza, Farmworkers Justice and the National Association of Latino Independent Producers (NALIP). At its October meeting, they had also admitted as members LatinoJustice PRLDEF and the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health. This brings its total organizational members to 34. NiLP is a member of the NHLA.
 
The NHLA is a Washington, DC-based coalition of the leading national Latino civil rights organizations in the United States. Among its work promoting Latino policy issues with the federal government, the NHLA publishes a Latino Policy Agenda every four years to impact on Presidential elections, a biennial Latino Policy Progress Report, and an annual Congressional Report Card.
 
A current major focus of concern for this coalition is the lack of Latino appointments by President Obama to his Cabinet and the extreme underrepresentation of Latinos in the federal government work force. Currently there are no Latinos in the Cabinet and the President has so far only nominated one Latino to a Cabinet-level post, Thomas Perez, whom the NHLA supports. To identify and promote Latino appointments to the Obama Administration, the NHLA has established a Latino Empowerment & Appointments Program that acts as a resume bank and liaison with the White House and other federal agencies.Hispanic Council on Federal Employment
 
In addition, although Latinos make up 15 percent of the civilian labor force, they only represent 8 percent of federal employees, making them the most underrepresented group in federal employment. To address this problem, the NHLA is advocating for the President to issue an executive order specifically focused on addressing the problem of Latino federal employment (as opposed to a more general "diversity" or "minorities"). They are also calling on individual federal agencies to create employment councils or task forces that address the specific problem of Latino underrepresentation on their staffs, following the precedent set by the federal Office of Personnel Management that has created an Hispanic Council on Federal Employment. At the meeting, it was announced that NHLA Chair, Hector Sánchez, has been designated Co-Chair of this OPM Hispanic Council; he is Executive Director of the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA).
 
Here are descriptions of the four new NHLA organizational members:
 
The American GI Forum (AGIF) is the only federally chartered veterans' organization that has a majority membership of Hispanic veterans. Incorporated as a 501(c)4 organization it is, by IRS code, a non-partisan organization and a not for profit. The AGIF is a national organization in scope having member chapters in various states across the country, with a membership of about 8,000.
 
Casa de Esperanza is a non-profit, non-partisan organization whose mission is to mobilize Latino communities to end domestic violence. Starting from a small group of Latina activists in St. Paul, Minnesota in 1982, Casa de Esperanza has grown into the premier Latino domestic violence organization in the country.
Casa de Esperanza maintains its identity as a Latina organization - in both staffing and approach. Their Board of Directors is 100% Hispanic, staff is 72% Hispanic, and their work is grounded in Hispanic realities. Casa de Esperanza founded and leads the National Latin@ Network for Healthy Families and Communities (NLN), which is a national network of individuals and organizations interested in ending domestic violence and promoting the health and well-being of Hispanic communities around the country.
 
Farmworker Justice, a non-partisan, national nonprofit organization, was formed in 1981. Their mission is to empower migrant and seasonal farmworkers, the large majority of whom are Hispanic, to improve their wages, working conditions, occupational safety, health, immigration status, and access to justice. They accomplish their mission through litigation, advocacy, public awareness, capacity building, coalition building and support for union organizing.
 
The National Association of Latino Independent Producers, Inc. (NALIP) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit registered in New York State and doing business in California. It has always partnered with other organizations such as the National Hispanic Media Coalition and NCLR to promote Latino media concerns. As a non-partisan entity NALIP works nationally to foster and promote Latino media makers to as many US communities as possible. NALIP is in the unique position to work with Latino social justice advocacy groups, media nonprofits, entertainment industry, and corporations. NALIP brings its Latino sensibility to diverse meeting rooms across the country and US territories.
 
Among the issues discussed at yesterday's NHLA Board meeting were the Fiscal Cliff, immigration reform, expanding diversity on the radio, and the proposed American Latino Museum. They also reported on meetings the NHLA has held with outgoing Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, the Census Bureau and USCIS Director Alejandro Mayorkas.