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This blog post is co-authored by Mónica Ramírez and Brandy Compton.

Violence against women occurs worldwide: on the streets, in homes and in the workplace. 1 in 3 women globally. That’s 1,000,000,00 women and girls who will experience some form of violence in their lives. The experience of violence is not monolithic and impinges on all the interconnected spheres of a woman’s life from the home to the workplace. The fact that violence against women has reached these levels marks the urgency of raising awareness for this endemic problem. Most people equate February 14th with Valentine’s Day. However, today, 1 billion people worldwide will rise as a part of the V-Day movement to stand against this terrible and horrific reality that women and girls face. Women and girls are not the only victims of violence in our society, but the statistics show that they are more likely to suffer from a violent crime than men and boys. Today, the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA) rises in solidarity on this global day of action. We rise to show the victims and survivors that they are not alone.

Exploitation against women occurs in a myriad of ways from physical assault and violence to emotional abuse, economic abuses, and sexual exploitation. Many Latinas experience these problems and, sometimes, they suffer multiple forms of violence.  A victim of domestic violence may also be a victim of sexual harassment at work and wage theft.  While each incidence may cause result in different harms for the victim, separately and cumulatively they have lasting consequences for women and their families.

Latinas, for example, suffer high rates of violence, according to Casa de Esperanza, a national anti-violence organization.  They also experience the widest wage gap of any other ethnic group in the United States. Latinas are paid 54 cents for every dollar their white male counterparts make. Further, they suffer from some of the highest rates of workplace sexual violence. Imagine the way that this wage disparity effects this woman and her family.  With the wages that she is cheated, she could send her children to college, and provide full healthcare for herself and her children. In addition, consider how failing to pay a woman her full earnings bears on her ability to leave an abusive partner or save enough resources to quit the job where they are being exploited.
Economic oppression is a form of violence that, at times, leaves victims vulnerable to further exploitation.  Failing to pay Latinas what they are owed for their hard work is a direct attack on them, their livelihoods, their families and their future.

LCLAA is dedicated to raising awareness about some of the ways in which Latinas are experiencing abuse and exploitation at work, including physical, sexual and economic violence and oppression. Though these problems are immense and, at times, might seem overwhelming, we know that we cannot back down from speaking out and taking action.

Violence against women in the workplace and any place is both a women’s rights and a human rights issue.  Unions and all workers’ rights organizations, along with all members of our society, must stand up and speak out against violence in all its forms.  To that end, LCLAA will maintain Trabajadoras’ success and safety at the forefront.  By organizing, lifting our voices and standing shoulder to shoulder, we will send the resounding message to victims and survivors that we stand with them. RISE UP with us today to speak out against violence in the workplace and every place.

Brandy Compton is a senior at the University of California, Los Angeles studying Gender Studies with a minor in Public Affairs. She is a participant of the UCDC Quarter in Washington academic and research program and is a Policy & Advocacy intern with LCLAA.

Mónica Ramírez has dedicated more than two decades to the eradication of gender-based violence and the promotion of gender equity, specifically on behalf of Latinas and farmworker and immigrant women. She is nationally recognized for her work to prevent and remedy workplace sexual violence. Mónica is an attorney, advocate, speaker and author. She holds a B.A from Loyola University in Chicago, a Juris Doctor from The Ohio State University, and a Masters in Public Administration from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. Mónica is the Director of Gender Equality and Trabajadoras’ Empowerment for the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA).

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One month ago, scores of organizations and individuals came together to register our outrage about the enormous gender wage gap that Latinas face in the workplace. November 1st marked the eleven additional months that it would take the average Latina worker, or Trabajadora, to work to earn what a white, male non-Hispanic worker in the same job was paid in just one year. This is how long it takes when you get paid 54 cents to the dollar paid to white, male workers. Collectively we sounded an alarm marking both our discontent and our commitment to close this gap and win equitable wages for Latinas and all workers.

Our commitment to this issue endures beyond this one day. The Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA) is devoted to continued efforts to get out the facts, raise our voices, and mobilize Latino labor leaders and workers around the country for action. Change requires persistent action and dedication, singularly focused on achieving equity, yet cognizant that achieving this end requires an investment in a myriad of different social justice campaigns.

A holistic view of why Latinas are at the bottom of the economic ladder requires an understanding of intersectionality and intentional commitment to work across movements. This is necessary to ensure that we are taking into account the whole picture - all of the reasons and all of the ways that Latina workers are experiencing wage theft, wage suppression and wage discrimination, including but not limited to gender, race, immigration status, sexual orientation and identity, marital status, motherhood or the choice not to have children, language, social status, education, language and a number of other factors that cannot be overlooked or minimized..

LCLAA looks forward to working with all of our partners to advance this strategy, to continuing conversations about this topic and to looking outside the box and across the aisle for solutions. You can show your support by championing campaigns addressing issues related to the wage gap, and the intersection of economic inequality and other important justice movements, including:

1. Equal Pay. Equal Pay Today Campaign, American Civil Liberties Union

Equal Pay Today works in coalition to leverage the expertise, network, and resources of its state projects and roundtable organizations to close the gender wage gap across the United States.

The campaign's vision includes: Compliance with existing laws, eliminating the gendered wage gap, transparency in pay without retaliation, fair overtime pay, an end to wage theft, and family-forward human resources policies that protect and support all workers.

2. Wage Transparency. Equal Pay Campaign, Restaurant Opportunities Center

Pay secrecy often prevents workers from discovering and taking action against wage discrimination. The "Wage Transparency Amendment Act" would increase pay equity and transparency by prohibiting retaliation against employees for discussing their wages and eliminating wage non-disclosure agreements, or so-called "pay secrecy" policies.

3. Living Wage. #FightFor15, Fight for 15

The Fight for a $15 minimum wage has rightly been called the civil rights movement of our time, and has grown into an international movement in over 300 cities on six continents of fast-food workers, home health aides, child care teachers, airport workers, adjunct professors, retail employees - and underpaid workers everywhere. (Also see "Tipped Minimum Wage" and "One Fair Wage" campaign from Restaurant Opportunities Center, below!)

4. Tipped Minimum Wage. One Fair Wage CampaignRestaurant Opportunities Center

Did you know that tipped workers are paid a separate, lower minimum wage? It's $2.13 an hour at the federal level, a rate that hasn't changed since 1991. That's bad enough, but the tipped minimum wage is especially unjust and harmful for women workers. Because they are dependent on customer tips for the vast bulk of their wages, women workers are often forced to tolerate sexual harassment and even assault at work.

5. Sexual Harassment. Hands Off, Pants On Campaign, UNITEHERE
In order to better understand the experience of women working in Chicagoland hotels and casinos, UNITE HERE Local 1, Chicago's hospitality workers union, pioneered a program to survey nearly 500 women. The study reveals that 58% of hotel workers and 77% of casino workers surveyed have been sexually harassed by a guest. Sexual harassment and assault are gendered oppression, and clear workplace safety threats.

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Since 1973, theLabor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA) has been on the forefront of protecting the civil and labor rights of all workers in the United States. Through our grassroots and federal advocacy, LCLAA has supported the broad coalition of labor, civil, and immigrant rights group asking to fix the broken immigration system that has devastated immigrant communities.

Consider this bilingual fact sheet to learn more about DAPA and DACA:


Administrative Relief  Fact Sheet - Bilingual-0


Administrative Relief  Fact Sheet - Bilingual-1


Click below to download the PDF version:



For more information visit www.lclaa.org/adminrelief




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Since 1973, the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA) has been on the forefront of protecting the civil and labor rights of all workers in the United States. Through our grassroots and federal advocacy, LCLAA has supported the broad coalition of labor, civil, and immigrant rights group asking to fix the broken immigration system that has devastated immigrant communities.

Consider these infographics from iAmerica on DAPA and expanded DACA (Click on the images for details)

Eligibility FlowChart Eligibility FlowChart Spanish


Click on the files below to download the PDF version



For more information visit: www.lclaa.org/adminrelief or www.iamerica.org



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Over half of the estimated 50 million uninsured individuals in the United States are racial and ethnic minorities who continue to lag behind in many health indicators, including access to quality care. Almost one in three Latinos, an estimated of 15 million people, are uninsured, yet Latinos suffer from certain illnesses at higher levels than white Americans.

Signed into law by President Obama, the Affordable Care Act will remove obstacles to care that many Latinos have historically faced and ensure that they will have better access to stable, affordable health insurance and high quality health care suited to their needs. Latinos, like all Americans, will have better protection from the worst insurance company abuses, more affordable health care, a stronger Medicare program, and better options for coverage.

  • Beginning in 2014, the Affordable Care Act will provide 10.2 million uninsured Latino Americans an opportunity to get affordable health insurance coverage.
  • 8.2 million Latinos with private insurance now have access to expanded preventive services with no cost sharing.
  • An estimated 4.9 million Latina women with private health insurance now have guaranteed access to women’s preventive services without cost sharing.
  • 3.9 million elderly and disabled Latinos who receive health coverage from Medicare have access to many preventive services with no cost-sharing.
  • 913,000Latino young adults between ages 19 and 25 who would have been uninsured, including 375,000 Latinas, now have coverage under their parents’ employer-sponsored or individually purchased health plan.
  • About 11.8 million Latinos, including 4.4 million adult Latinas, no longer have lifetime limits on their health insurance.

For LCLAA, the health and well-being of our community is a priority. That is why we support the Affordable Care Act and encourage all who qualify to enroll in this program.

REMINDER: The open enrollment for this year closes on March 31, 2014. To enroll, click here

ACTION ALERT: One in four young adults in the United States is uninsured. Join LCLAA this February 15th  for National Youth Enrollment Day and encourage members of your community to enroll in affordable, quality healthcare. Click here for more information.

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Eighteen year old Selena Zelaya of Mount Dora, Florida traveled to D.C. in July to lobby for farmworker protections against harmful pesticides.  Unfortunately, the current state of farmworker protections against pesticides is almost nonexistent due to outdated safeguards the EPA has failed to revise in over 20 years.  As a result, many farmworkers, including both of Selena’s parents, are vulnerable to exposure or have already been exposed to harmful chemicals.  To read more about the need for stronger farmworker protections and Selena’s story, click here.

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LCLAA se enorgullece más que nunca, en el marco del Mes Nacional de la Herencia Hispana, de representar los intereses de más de 2 millones de trabajadores latinos sindicalizados en los Estados Unidos y Puerto Rico.

Celebrar el Mes de la Herencia Hispana, es celebrar los valores que comparten las millones de familias latinas, que con su trabajo y esfuerzo engrandecen esta nación.  Sabiendo que los valores más profundos de nuestra comunidad nos distinguen siempre, celebrar este mes significa reconocer a nuestras familias, a nuestros jóvenes, a nuestros DREAMers, a nuestras  mujeres TRABAJADORAS y a todos los más de 50 millones de latinos, que representamos la principal minoría en los Estados Unidos.

Celebrar nuestra herencia, es recordar que la población hispana orgullosamente tiene más de 500 años establecida en Norte América, es recordar que generación tras generación ha aportado su trabajo, su esfuerzo y su cultura para consolidar el poderío de esta nación.

Celebremos recordando, que con el 16% de la población de los Estados Unidos, nuestro trabajo y esfuerzo año con año se ve mejor representado en los procesos electorales, resultando nuestra comunidad uno de los más importantes bloques de votantes. Es por esto que LCLAA seguirá defendiendo el derecho al voto de la comunidad latina.

Es momento de permanecer más unidos que nunca ante los retos que enfrenta nuestra comunidad. Es momento de luchar juntos por la Reforma Migratoria y exigir a los congresistas la representación que merecen los hispanos. 

Es momento de luchar por mejorar las condiciones de trabajo para nuestra gente y de luchar por trabajos dignos y salarios justos, a sabiendas de que conformamos el grupo poblacional con el menor ingreso en el país, es decir con los salarios peor remunerados. Luchemos por mantenernos unidos y apoyar la educación de nuestros hijos, y los derechos de nuestras mujeres TRABAJADORAS, de nuestros DREAMers y nuestra gente.

Celebremos el Mes Nacional de la Herencia Hispana, recordando que la comunidad latina, con más de 22 millones de personas en la fuerza laboral del país, ha alcanzado un poder adquisitivo de aproximadamente un trillón de dólares, beneficiando al desarrollo de la economía estadounidense. 

LCLAA seguirá defendiendo con orgullo el trabajo, luchando por la dignidad, justicia y derechos de la comunidad hispana.

LCLAA festeja la grandeza de nuestros pueblos y nuestras culturas, la grandeza de nuestro pasado y nuestro presente. ¡LCLAA celebra nuestra Herencia!



LCLAA Celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month.

LCLAA is very proud to represent the interests of the more than 2 million unionized Latino workers in the United States and Puerto Rico, especially while celebrating the National Hispanic Heritage Month.

To celebrate the Hispanic Heritage Month is to celebrate the values, hard work and passion of the millions of Latino families across America. By celebrating our heritage in this month, we celebrate our families, our DREAMers, our TRABAJADORAS, our workers and all the more than 50 million Latinos that together represent the largest minority in the United States.

Celebrating our heritage is proudly recognizing that Hispanic population has been living in America for more than 500 years. Celebrating our heritage is remembering how throughout generations the Latino community has helped this nation to consolidate its power.   

Lets celebrate remembering that we constitute 16% of America´s population. Our political importance is now transcendental for both political parties if they want to win elections. The Latino community is now one of the must important voting blocs in this country, and together we have the power to make change happen.

LCLAA will continue advocating for the Voting Rights of Latinos. We are convinced this is the time to be united against the challenges of our community. This is the time to fight for Immigration Reform and to demand Congress to pass this legislation.

This is the time to fight for improving working conditions, to fight against disparities in earnings and considerable lower wages than the rest of the population of this country. Lets fight united for the education of our children, for the rights of our TRABAJADORAS, of our DREAMers and our people.

Lets celebrate the National Hispanic Heritage Month remembering that the Latino community is growing faster and our purchasing power is valued at approximately $1 trillion. Lets celebrate our important contribution to the economy of the United States.

LCLAA’s mission is to advocate for dignity in the jobs of our workers; and to continue to fight for  he rights and justice of the Latino community. 

LCLAA celebrates the greatness of our peoples and our cultures, the greatness of our past and our present. LCLAA celebrates our Heritage!

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Central Florida LCLAA Chapter congratulates Brother and LCLAA member Victor Torres for this Award.  Victor's lifetime of service began when he joined the U.S. Marine Corps during the Vietnam War. After his service in the U.S. Marine Corps, he ensured safety and order in his community as a police officer for the New York City Transit Police. After twenty years, Victor retired from the New York City Transit Police as 2nd Grade Detective.

In 1993, Victor relocated his family to Florida, joined ATU Local 1596 and continued his community service as a volunteer and leader for several community organizations, the labor movement, and grassroots efforts. Victor has been married to Carmen L. Torres for over twenty years, and they are the proud parents of five children and grandparents to eight grandchildren.

Brother Torres has established a strong reputation as a committed political activist and an effective leader in the Labor Movement through his work as Political Coordinator for ATU Local 1596, Vice Chair of the Central Florida LCLAA Chapter, and strong dedication to the Central Florida Labor Council.Victor Torres

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ORLANDO, Fla. - Even in a state with a "right-to-work" law like Florida, workers still need to join unions and leverage their power by collectively bargaining with employers. That was the message Central Florida AFL-CIO Central Labor Council Secretary and Central Florida LCLAA chapter President Victor Sanchez had for the annual Labor Day picnic here last week.

More than 450 union members, their families and supporters flocked to the picnic at a downtown park here on Labor Day, Sept. 2. The annual event, organized by the Central Florida Labor Council to celebrate the contributions that working people make to the economy and to society, also attracted a wide range of groups from the local progressive community.

Florida is one of the 24 states that have so-called right-to-work laws (which rather than protecting the rights of workers, actually interfere with the right of organizations representing workers to negotiate contracts with employers that benefit workers). Sanchez, who is a member of the American Postal Workers Union, said that one of the points the CLC was trying to make with the picnic is: "By joining the union, we can build a stronger movement, and by building a stronger movement, we can stop bosses from abusing workers."

A 2011 study by the Washington-based Economic Policy Institute found that workers in "right-to-work" states earned lower wages and had lower rates of employee-sponsored health insurance and pensions.

Sanchez said that immediate goals for the labor movement should include ensuring that all workers earn living wages and have the right to organize, and making sure that younger workers remember the history and legacy of those in the labor movement who struggled before them for better pay, benefits and working conditions.

Timothy Murray, a community organizer with Organize Now!, a group that was heavily involved in the campaign for earned sick time for workers in Orange County, Fla. (the home of Orlando and Disney World), said that all workers need living wages of at least $10 an hour, sick time, vacation days and affordable housing.

"Every worker in this country should have at least five days of sick time or personal time and five days of vacation," said Murray. "Every worker in the country has earned that. Everyone deserves a week off."

More than 70,000 voters in Orange County signed petitions to put an earned sick time measure on the 2012 ballot that, if passed, would have mandated that companies with 15 or more workers give them one hour of paid sick time for every 37 hours worked--up to an annual limit of 56 hours.

In a brazen assault on democracy, the Orange County Commission, in violation of its own charter and after being intensively lobbied by local big business interests such as Disney and Darden Restaurants (Olive Garden, Red Lobster), refused to place the measure on the ballot. A three-judge panel later ruled that it had to be placed on the 2014 ballot.

Any vote on the measure has, however, been rendered moot by passage in this year's Florida legislative session of a bill, heavily backed by big business interests and Republicans, to prohibit counties and cities from mandating benefits such as sick time. The bill was signed into law in June by ultra-right millionaire Gov. Rick Scott.

A 2013 report by the Economic Policy Institute noted that the "inflation-adjusted value of the [federal] minimum wage today" - $7.25 an hour, last raised in 2009 - "is about $2.00 an hour less than it was at its peak value in 1968." Florida's minimum wage, last raised at the beginning of 2013, is $7.79 ($4.77 for tipped workers).

The report's authors also note that "in 2011, a full-time year-round worker needed to earn $11.06 an hour to keep a family of four out of poverty." Doing this in 2013 requires a yearly family income of $23,550 or above, according to the latest poverty guidelines from the federal Department of Health and Human Services.

According to the EPI, in 2011 - even if they were able to work full time - 36 percent of African American workers, 43 percent of Latino workers and around 25 percent of white workers were unable to raise themselves and their families above the poverty threshold.

Other community groups participating in the picnic included Central Florida Jobs With Justice, YAYA (Youth and Young Adult Network of the National Farmworker Ministry), the Farmworker Association of Florida, Mi Familia Vota, the Student-Labor Action Project at the University of Central Florida, LCLAA (The Labor Council for Latin American Advancement) and the A. Phillip Randolph Institute.

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Co-authored by Diana Arguello of LCLAA National

When my parents took a look around them, they knew there was no future for their children there. Having grown up in large families in the rural area of an impoverished country, my parents were used to hardship and working hard for an opportunity to move up. Unfortunately, the obstacles were too great and they weren’t able to get far in their education: my mother dropping out after third grade despite being an astute and interested student and my father unable to complete his college education—both because of a lack of money. Wanting a better future for their children they worked tirelessly for years babysitting, landscaping, and housecleaning, all the while raising two children and emphasizing the importance of education as the great equalizer.

Their hard work paid off and to everyone’s delight, my brother and I both earned a bachelor’s degree at our respective colleges. As I graduated, I took in the moment realizing that my 16 years of hard work coupled with countless time and effort from my parents had culminated in this amazing moment: we were living the American Dream.

In time, the post-graduation glow quickly faded and slowly this American Dream is feeling unreachable. Not all of us are fortunate enough to have access to scholarships or parents who can afford to pay for our education. Most of us have to rely on loans to pay for school hoping that after we graduate we will get a job, start a successful career and eventually start paying off our debt.  Finding a stable job is a daunting venture right now and due to the high rates of unemployment, we college graduates find ourselves in a very difficult situation when money is scarce and student loan bills are on the verge of becoming delinquent. These are the trials of the modern day post-secondary school student who must balance the demands of higher education with a series of rarely discussed obstacles.

One such obstacle is the immense cost of tuition. College students have to find the means to pay for exorbitantly high tuition rates – that in the last 30 years have increased by 1,120 percent, by taking on loans which initially appear manageable, but wind up being never-ending.  Student loans are essential for about 12 million students that require additional financial support to pursue their academic goals.

This year more so than any other year, commencement not only signifies the culmination of a college degree, but it also marks the beginning of an arduous and uncertain future. Recent graduates will begin navigating the complicated process of finding a job in a difficult market with the threat of doubling federal student loans looming. This process has become even more complicated since the bills  that could have stopped the doubling of student loan interest rates by the July 1st deadline were struck down by the Senate on June 6th. Recent graduates are now facing a high unemployment rate and likely rising interest rates that make the execution of loan payments difficult. The situation is further exacerbated by the rising cost of tuition.

Sixty percent of all students have to take out loans to cover tuition and fees, myself included. In 2010, 19 percent of American households had student loans, and as the need for money increases, the total amount of student outstanding loan debt has skyrocketed reaching close to 1 trillion dollars. As students face the consequences of acquiring an educational loan, they struggle to make payments due to the difficulty of finding a job. Without a job with a living salary to accommodate present needs with enough left over to save to repay loans, graduates cannot keep up with the payments leading to an increase of 13.4 percent in the 3-year national cohort default rate as reported by the U.S. Department of Education. It is remarkable how doubling student loan interest will not only affect student borrowers’ finances but also American society as a whole.

Student debt burdens future consumers by preventing them from actively participating in the economy. Students with more debt are unlikely to purchase a car or a home, thus jeopardizing the market.  Unfortunately, many graduate students find themselves trapped with no job and with rising debt, they have few options including returning home after graduation. Individuals burdened with student debt commonly decide to live with their parents, thus the origin of the term “Boomerang Generation”. While students are usually comprised of young people in their twenties, student loan debt is not limited to only young people.

Americans ages 60 and above are still paying back their school debt, which adds up to about $36 billion. Student debt has surpassed both car and credit card debt in recent years. Two out of five borrowers have become delinquent at some point after they have initiated the loan repayment process. As a result of the student debt crisis, The Health Care and Reconciliation Act was passed in 2010, and the following year, President Obama established an executive order to create some temporary relief for student loan debtors. Such legislative action is helpful, but temporary and hardly addresses rising unemployment and tuition rates.

                On July 1st, 2013, interest rates on federal subsidized Stafford student loans, which are provided to low- and middle-income students, are scheduled to double from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent. This higher interest rate will increase the burden of the already afflicted student loan debtors, and will jeopardize the individuals who want to pursue their post-secondary education. The President and Congressional Republicans proposed different plans to prevent the increase on federal student loans, though they both start the same way: tying rates on student loans to the interest on a 10-year Treasury note. That rate is expected to be about 2.5 percent next year, climbing to just over 5 percent in 2018.

It is highly important that the President and Congress work together to find a long-term solution that will guarantee students viable and workable pay rates that will prevent them from ending up in unmanageable debt. In order to solve this problem, it is necessary to create a solid long-term strategy that would alleviate the situation of current student loan debtors while also addressing the dilemma of doubling interest rates. Solving this important issue is critical to the growth of our nation and reaffirming the value of education in American society.


Pioneering American educator Horace Mann said it best: “beyond all other devices of human origin, [education] is a great equalizer of the conditions of men -- the balance wheel of the social machinery". My parents inculcated in me the importance of education because they understand what Horace understood--education changes the dynamics of society and an educated person can change the world around them. Without education, we are trapped. Higher education frees us by providing an opportunity to absorb knowledge, think critically, and construct the world us. As the cost of education becomes higher, we are denying an important tool to future generations while simultaneously diminishing the full potential of graduates who are saddled with debt. In order to truly be accessible, high quality education must be made available within the means of those aspiring to achieve it. This increase in Stafford Loan Rates is a bad policy for the future of our nation.

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Written by Gysele Miranda of LCLAA National

June 10th marks the 50th anniversary of President John F. Kennedy signing into law the Equal Pay Act (EPA) of 1963. But while a lot has changed in these past 50 years, there still exists a gender wage gap in today’s society.  

Back in 1963, women were paid 59 cents for every dollar paid to men. Today, it is said that women are paid 77 cents for every dollar. Some improvement has been made, but it is still not equal or fair pay. The disparity becomes even larger when one looks at women of color, African-American women earn 60 cents and Latinas earn only 54 cents for every dollar.

For women who enter such male dominated careers like engineering or management (for example), they are often paid less than their male counterparts even though most have the same (or more) amount of experience/skill set. This is coming at a time where more women are the breadwinners of their families. Thus, pay disparity not only hurts women but also their families and by extension our economy. In a grander scheme, this pay disparity affects greatly the female college graduates with growing amounts of student debt. Because these women are paid less, more of their income goes to paying off those debts leaving less and less for investment, whether it be investing in a stock portfolio or their retirement plans.

Why is this pay disparity still happening? The EPA was signed to eliminate this problem and promote gender equality 50 years ago, but the problem persists. The answer is that private and public companies are now exploiting loopholes found in the act. The Equal Protection Act states that the acceptable reasons for paying women less than men are to be based on seniority, merit, and productivity. However, it gives some “breathing room” for companies by allowing them to use more vague reasons, such as personality, as a reason for less pay. Another issue with the EPA is that no punitive damages are dealt to the employer who is found guilty of discrimination. Only retroactive pay for the two previous years of employment can be won by the plaintiff, which is hardly a deterrent to large corporations.  More and more private companies are also making sure that workers do not disclose their salary to others with the threat of termination. The disclosure of salary is not protected by the EPA.

However, there are already efforts being made to close these loopholes in the EPA and to help further women’s rights. In 2009, President Barack Obama signed into law the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act which allowed for more time to file a charge of discriminatory pay (under the EPA it was 180 days within the first discriminatory paycheck, with the Fair Pay act it was extended to 180 days after receiving any discriminatory paycheck). More recently, the Paycheck Fairness Act was set to be voted on the week of June 4 in the Senate. This act further looks to close any loopholes in the EPA by requiring more legitimate reasons for less pay from companies (such as fewer credentials rather than personality), allowing punitive damages, and protecting the disclosure of salary between workers, thus creating transparency in the workplace.


But this isn’t the first time this bill has come to a vote, it was introduced in 2009. However, in 2010, it was defeated by a minority of U.S. Senators. NOW is the time more than ever to advocate for this act so it actually gets passed and also to strengthen the enforcement of existing anti-discrimination laws. A wide coalition between various civil rights, community and activist groups, including the Coalition of Labor Union Women, has formed across the country to urge constituents to write to their senators. The wage gap for Latinas is the highest in the nation and as such, LCLAA will continue to support the Equal Pay Act and Paycheck Fairness Act. LCLAA firmly believes in advancing women’s rights, not only for Latinas but for all women. We strongly urge YOU to become more active as the fight continues for legislation that ensures equality and fair pay!

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Governor Vetoes Dream Act Driver’s License Bill

Republican Governor Rick Scott Bucks Fellow Florida Republicans; Continues National Republican Effort to Marginalize Hispanic and Other Legalized Immigrants

Orlando - Senator Darren Soto (D-Orlando) and Representative Randolph Bracy (D-Orlando)on Wednesday held a press conference to highlight GOP Governor Rick Scott's latest refusal to embrace the Hispanic community in Florida. The lawmakers met to discuss the Governor's veto on Tuesday of HB 235 which would have allowed legal Hispanic and other legal immigrants in the United States with no criminal history to obtain a driver’s license.  The measure was approved in the Republican-dominated legislature with a vote of 115-2 in the Florida House and unanimously in the Senate.
Hispanic and non-Hispanic members of the Florida Legislature are expected to join Sen. Soto and Rep. Bracy at the event, including Senator Geraldine Thompson, Representatives Victor Torres, Ricardo Rangel, Joe Saunders, and Linda Stewart.  Several local grassroots supporters of the failed legislation are also expected to attend.
The press conference was held on Wednesday, June 5th, at 11:00 PM outside the Orange County Courthouse, 425 N. Orange Avenue, Orlando, FL 32801.

Here is the Gov's veto letter, explaining that yes, DACA recipients can still get a temporary drivers license card.
June 4, 2013Secretary Kenneth W. Detzner
Secretary of State
Florida Department of State
R.A. Gray Building
500 South Bronough Street
Tallahassee, Florida 32399

Dear Secretary Detzner:

By the authority vested in me as Governor of the State of Florida, under the provisions of Article III, Section 8, of the Constitution of Florida, I do hereby veto and transmit my objections to House Bill 235 enacted during the 115th Session of the Legislature of Florida, during the Regular Session of 2013 and entitled:

An act relating to requirements for driver licenses…

Florida is home to immigrants of many nationalities, who add to the cultural fabric of our great state, and whose productivity and hard work have contributed to our economic turnaround.  Still, our nation struggles with immigration issues every day, as Americans seek to reconcile the fact that at one point our families were immigrants who came, as many do today, to work and live the American dream with the fact that the federal government has failed at enforcing the nation's laws on this topic.

Despite the federal government's inability to enforce the nation's current immigration laws or to find common ground on how to change them, the United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced in a June 2012 memo the immediate establishment of a "Deferred Action Process for Childhood Arrivals." Through this process DHS provides that a young person illegally brought to the United States as a child will not be subject to removal if the individual meets certain criteria.  Qualifying for deferred action status does not confer substantive rights or lawful status upon an individual; it does not create a pathway to a green card or citizenship; nor does it extend to any family members of the person granted the status either.  Deferred action status is simply a policy of the Obama Administration, absent Congressional direction, designed to dictate removal action decisions using DHS agency discretion.  It was never passed by Congress, nor is it a promulgated rule.

Given that deferred action status does not confer substantive rights or lawful status upon an individual, Florida is best served by relying on current state law. Already, Florida law allows those with a federal employment authorization card, without regard to their deferred action status, to obtain a temporary Florida driver license.

Although the Legislature may have been well intentioned in seeking to expedite the process to obtain a temporary driver license, it should not have been done by relying on a federal government policy adopted without legal basis.

For the reasons stated above, I withhold my approval of House Bill 235, and do hereby veto the same.


Rick Scott

In Solidarity
Victor Sanchez
Central Florida LCLAA
Chapter President
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The FL AFL-CIO, Central Florida Labor Council for Latin American Advancement Chapter and the Hope Community Center have joined forces to hold a day of immersion with the Apopka farmworker community, and experience the "hands on" work in the fields and the subsequent community forum.Apopka is brimming with history and stories - from its rural farmworker roots, to its increasingly more urbanized, multicultural state. Service-Learning is a way to actively contribute to the community, while learning about its history, social justice issues, culture, and much more! We have developed a unique model which makes it possible for people of various talents and walks of life to participate in our community. Come join us for a day of immersion where we will explore issues of immigration, and farmworkers. Our program strongly feels that by building community across cultures and socioeconomic status we can effectively change the world! Won't you be part of our CommUnity?

Here's a link https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.4773781230353.1073741828.1470232586&type=1

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Good morning. I just got back from Washington DC and what an experience. LCLAA members participated at the 50 States United for Healthy Air this week. As one of the Florida Ambassadors we lobbied members of Congress and Senate demanding action for clean air, clean water and clean climate. Here is the press release. Organizations that participated ( American Nurses Association, Earthjustice, Hip Hop Caucus, Labor Council for Latin American Advancement, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, National Council of Churches, National Latino Coalition on Climate Change, and Physicians for Social Responsibility  represented all 50 states and Puerto Rico ) Florida Team visited  Senators Bill Nelson and Marco Rubio. Congress Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Bill Young, and John Mica. Florida Team ( Central Florida LCLAA Chapter, Sierra Club State, Hip Hop Caucus Miami and Physicians for Social Responsibility Indian Rocks.
Hi Everyone- It was so great having you all here. Telling your personal stories to both the EPA and congress.


Below is  the press release we sent out yesterday. Feel free to personalize it and share it with your local media contacts. It would be a good time to send  letter to  your local paper talking about your meetings and why you went to D.C.

Also you should go check out your ambassador page and see what people are posting.

What an amazing group. www.earthjustice.org/50states/2013



May 15, 2013

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Raviya Ismail, Earthjustice, (202) 745-5221rismail@earthjustice.org

Jemarion Jones, American Nurses Association, (301) 628-5198,jemarion.jones@ana.org

Chanelle Blackwell, Hip Hop Caucus, (202) 293-5902,chanelle@hiphopcaucus.org

Victor Baten, Labor Council for Latin American Advancement, (561) 358-0254,vbaten@lclaa.org  

Tanea Jackson, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, (410) 580-5762tjackson@naacpnet.org

Tyler Edgar, National Council of Churches, (239) 560-1560,tedgar@nccecojustice.org

Barbara Gottlieb, Physicians for Social Responsibility, (240) 461-2305,bgottlieb@psr.org


Clean Air Takes Over Capitol Hill

More than 100 physicians, tribal leaders, labor leaders, clergy, nurses, parents to meet with Congress on carbon pollution, smog, ash, other clean air priorities


Washington, D.C. - Today on Capitol Hill nurses, physicians, clergy, labor and tribal leaders, and social justice advocates are meeting with their members of Congress to call for greater protections from smog, coal ash, carbon and other dangerous air pollutants.  This National Asthma Awareness Month is an opportunity for Congress and the Obama administration to protect the health of millions of Americans suffering from asthma by adopting strong air pollution standards and protecting the Clean Air Act.


Under the banner of 50 States United for Healthy Air, this diverse group of representatives from American Nurses Association, Earthjustice, Hip Hop Caucus, Labor Council for Latin American Advancement, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, National Council of Churches, National Latino Coalition on Climate Change, and Physicians for Social Responsibility are representing all 50 states and Puerto Rico to clean up the air we all breathe.


These “Clean Air Ambassadors” are calling for:

  • Finalizing a pending standard to reduce carbon emissions from new coal-fired power plants, and to urgently move forward on a standard to reduce emissions from existing power plants. These plants are responsible for more than one third of the carbon pollution generated in our nation.
  • Finalizing a federally enforceable coal ash rule. Over 1,400 unregulated coal ash dams and landfills threaten the health and safety of hundreds of communities living near these dump sites. Despite a massive coal ash spill and a growing number of coal ash contamination cases (204 in 37 states), the EPA has not finalized federal regulations for the disposal of toxic coal ash.
  • Strengthening the current standard for ozone pollution, or smog. This could annually prevent up to 12,000 premature deaths, tens of thousands of asthma attacks and hospital visits, and hundreds of thousands of lost school and work days.
  • Finalizing the pending cleaner gasoline and tailpipe standards (Tier 3). This would reduce smog-producing pollution and soot emitted from our vehicles, preventing up to 2,400 premature deaths, 3,200 hospital admissions and 22,000 asthma attacks each year.


Stronger national air quality standards would force polluters to use available technology to clean up their act, reducing the threat to children, older adults, people with lung disease, people of color, low-income communities, and outdoor workers and recreators. 


Statement by Suzy Harrington, Director, Department for Health, Safety, and Wellness at American Nurses Association:


“As the largest group of health care providers, nurses see first-hand the devastating effects that air and water pollution can have on the health of individuals and communities if left unchecked. We encourage actions that will create healthy environments and improve the health of all Americans. We support regulations and standards that protect the public from the serious health risks linked to carbon, smog and other dangerous pollutants.”


Statement by Trip Van Noppen, President of Earthjustice:


“Congress needs to hear and see that cleaning up our air a priority for a broad spectrum of their constituents. We are grateful for every health professional, clergy, labor leader, tribal leader and community advocate that has come to Washington to meet their member and tell their own story. The power of those personal experiences is what will overcome the dozens of high-paid industry lobbyists wanting fewer protections and less oversight. We are proud to help carry the message that clean air is important to all.”


Statement by Rev. Lennox Yearwood Jr.Hip Hop Caucus President and CEO:


“The poor and people of color suffer first and worst from high levels of air and water pollution and from devastation by natural disasters caused by extreme weather patterns linked to climate change. The Hip Hop Caucus' grassroots leadership has come to Washington, DC to urge President Obama to tell the EPA to implement vital protections to clean up our air, with the fierce urgency of now.”


Statement by Milton Rosado, President of the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement:


“LCLAA fully supports the efforts of the 50 States United for Healthy Air. Upholding and improving air quality standards is imperative for the Latino community. Seven out of the 25 most polluted U.S. cities have Latino populations over 40 percent, threatening the health and well-being of our communities. Our 9 LCLAA Clean Air Ambassadors and the 52 LCLAA chapters are here to demand strong standards that will protect all communities from climate change and health-harming pollution.”


Statement by Jacqui PattersonNAACP Director of the Environmental and Climate Justice Program:


“Communities of color disproportionately endure higher rates of asthma, respiratory problems and other chronic diseases, not because of their lifestyles or because of genetics, but because of their zip codes. The NAACP will continue to stand up, speak out, and fight until all communities can breathe clean air, drink clean water, and live on uncontaminated land.”


Statement by Cassandra Carmichael, Director of the National Council of Churches Washington Office:


"As Christians, clean air and healthy communities are in keeping with our call to serve as stewards of God's creation and seek justice for the vulnerable and marginalized among us. Climate change, smog, and coal ash disproportionately harm communities of color, low-income communities, the young while threatening the health and well-being of the whole of god's creation.”


Statement by Barbara Gottlieb, Director of Environment & Health atPhysicians for Social Responsibility:


"As doctors and health professionals, we are seriously worried about the health effects of climate change. From potentially fatal heat stroke to life-threatening storms, the spread of insect-borne and waterborne diseases, worsening air pollution, drought and food shortages, climate change is first and foremost a threat to health."

 Because the earth needs a good lawyer


 In Solidarity,

Victor Sanchez

Central Florida LCLAA
Chapter President
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Next week from May 13-16, 2013, I will be representing the Central Florida LCLAA Chapter as an Clean Air Ambassador in Washignton DC together with NLCCC, NAACP and other organizations. For more information on this year's 50 States Effort, please visit www.earthjustice.org/50states/2013 and http://earthjustice.org/50states/2013/victor-sanchez

Clean air and clean water are products of forests.

 The role of trees and forests in our ecosystems is absolutely critical. Forests renew our air supply by absorbing carbon dioxide and producing oxygen. Trees also clean our atmosphere by intercepting airborne particles, and by absorbing ground-level ozone, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, and other greenhouse gases. A single tree can absorb 10 pounds of air pollutants a year, and produce nearly 260 pounds of oxygen- enough to support two people.

Urban trees can do even more for clean air. Depending on location, species, size, and condition, shade from trees can reduce utility bills for air conditioning in residential and commercial buildings by 15 to 50%. Through shade and the evaporation of water from their leaves, trees also provide natural, low-tech cooling that reduces energy use and the need to build power plants.

While the role of trees in cleaning the air is well understood, the ecosystem services that forests perform regarding water is still being explored. Forests, it turns out, act as natural reservoirs, treatment plants, and  management storm water systems.

Forests provide natural filtration and storage systems that process nearly two-thirds of the water supply in the United States. In their natural and healthy state, riparian forests help to keep the water in streams clear. The forests do such a good job that the city only needs to do a minimum of additional filtering.

The ability of forest vegetation and soils to absorb and filter water also increases groundwater, as clean water trickles down to feed aquifers that may be tapped hundreds of miles away by thirsty cities. This same capacity to absorb water helps moderate runoff during rainstorms, and is one reason that cities around the nation are aggressively planting trees. 

Victor Sanchez

Central Florida LCLAA

Chapter President


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El 1° de mayo se conmemora en todo el mundo el Día Internacional del Trabajo en homenaje a los llamados Mártires de Chicago, grupo de sindicalistas que fueron ejecutados en 1886 por participar en luchas reivindicatorias para conseguir una jornada de trabajo de ocho horas, ya que en esa época era usual que la misma fuera de 12 y 16 horas diarias, pudiendo llegar, según la legislación norteamericana, a las 18 horas; Es así como en este día los trabajadores en todos países demuestran su solidaridad en su lucha contra el incremento de la pobreza, la miseria, y la explotación capitalista. El mundo continua dividiéndose más y más entre los ricos y los pobres, opresores y oprimidos.


 lee mas acerca de este dia.  

Más de 12 Millones de trabajadores latinos que representan el 60 por ciento de la fuerza laboral latina en Estados Unidos, no tienen días pagados cuando se enferman, mucho menos reciben pago cuando alguno de sus hijos se enferma; En momentos como este en que el dinero de la mayoría de las familias es escaso y el desempleo es elevado, ningún trabajador debe perder ingresos.

Los trabajadores latinos tienen el mayor índice de participación en la fuerza laboral de todos los grupos raciales o étnicos, pero tienen una mayor probabilidad de trabajar en empleos donde no tienen días pagados por enfermedad, entre ellas: preparar y servir comida, construccion y cuidado personal.  

El año pasado, los latinos representaron el 15 por ciento, 23 millones de todos los trabajadores en los Estados Unidos, y este porcentaje se espera que aumente al 19 por ciento en 2020. En general, uno de cada seis estadounidenses es latino. Y para el año 2050, se espera que alrededor de uno de cada cuatro estadounidense sea latino, lo que representaría el 29 por ciento de la población total de nuestro país; Estos números han sido también representados en momento de elecciones, por lo que es importante que estas familias reciban una solución, La promulgación de leyes que requieran días pagados por enfermedad permitiría que millones de trabajadores, entre ellos los latinos, ganaran días pagados por enfermedad para recuperarse de enfermedades de corta duración, cuidar a un miembro de su familia enfermo, obtener atención médica o preventiva necesaria o buscar asistencia relacionada a la violencia familiar, la agresión sexual o al acoso. Invitamos a los gobiernos alrededor del mundo a promulgar leyes que beneficien la sustentabilidad económica de largo plazo de las y los trabajadores. Los trabajadoras Latinos somos el presente y el futuro central de este país.

¿Podremos continuar siendo potencia mundial sin los trabajadores Latinos?.........


Conoce nuestras publicaciones “Latino Workers in the U.S." y “Trabajadoras”, retos y condiciones de las mujeres trabajadoras latinas en Estados Unidos en www.lclaa.org

 ¡Viva el internacional día del trabajo!

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Immigration reform negotiator and potential 2016 presidential candidate Sen. Marco Rubio said Sunday that he has not considered the 'political calculus' of pushing legislation that will be a magnet for criticism from some within his own party. 

"I, quite frankly, have avoided making the political calculus on this issue," the Florida senator said.

"What we have now isn't good for anybody," he added. "What we have in place today, the status quo, is horrible for America."

Seeking to assuage conservative concerns about the soon-to-be-unveiled immigration reform bill drafted by the bipartisan Gang of Eight, Rubio said the legislation, which would offer undocumented immigrants the opportunity to pursue legal status and eventually apply for a visa, does not "reward" those who broke the law.

"It doesn't reward or doesn't award them anything," he said. "But it does give them access to our legal immigration system through a process that will not encourage people to come here illegally in the future, and then through a process that isn't unfair for people that have done it the right way." 

Rubio, a conservative affiliated with the Tea Party and one of just three Latinos in the Senate, added that the bill will not allow undocumented immigrants to achieve citizenship faster than those waiting to come to the country legally. 

"If you're waiting to come legally to the United States now, no one who has done it the wrong way will get it before you.  In fact, it will be much cheaper, faster, easier and less bureaucratic if you're doing it the right way," he said. 

Florida Sen. Marco Rubio discusses certain details of bipartisan immigration overhaul framework and the potential for amendments and changes to the measure.

The interview with NBC's David Gregory was part of a weekend media blitz for Rubio, who appeared on all network Sunday shows as well as on Spanish-language programs to sell the immigration bill. The measure, which is expected to be unveiled on Tuesday, is sure to face fierce opposition from conservatives who oppose any legal status for undocumented immigrants.

While the full details of the path to citizenship have not been formally released by the Gang of Eight, reports have indicated that undocumented immigrants will be required to pay fines and back taxes and wait 10 years in a "probationary" status before becoming eligible to apply for a merit-based visa.

Asked if his shepherding of the immigration measure would help him in a potential matchup against a top Democrat like former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in 2016, Rubio again demurred. 

"This is not about improving anyone's poll number numbers," he said. "This is very simple. I'm a Senator. I get paid not to just give speeches. I get paid to solve problems."

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We urge you to create a humane and just immigration process that provides a clear roadmap to citizenship for the 11 million aspiring citizens and dignifies the individual and our nation by ensuring access to affordable health care and needed nutrition assistance. We believe that reform of our immigration system is a moral and economic imperative. This is true for the millions of aspiring citizens caught in the morass of a broken system; for those of us whose family, friends, neighbors, schools, congregations and communities include these individuals; and for achieving a stronger, more prosperous nation.

It is well established that immigrants help fuel the U.S. economy with their hard work and entrepreneurship. They contribute to the national treasury and are needed to shore up Social Security and Medicare. Our population is aging and our labor force increasingly depends upon immigrants and their children.

A new immigration system with a roadmap to citizenship will bring aspiring citizens out of the shadows so that they and their families may fully and equally participate in the life of our nation. Doing so not only will help immigrants but will profoundly benefit the community at large. It will enable economic growth and ground our national policy in the values we cherish. This is our opportunity to live up to our nation’s promise of the unalienable rights of “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

To acknowledge the inherent value and dignity of all human beings and to invest in our future, we must commit to ensuring their health and wellbeing. We ask our leaders to pass a national immigration law grounded in our most cherished principles. Such a policy will provide equal responsibility, and an equal opportunity to meet that responsibility, to all individuals living in the U.S.

Immigration reform that reflects America’s values and priorities will provide equality and dignity and will:

  • Help lift families out of poverty and promote economic security for all low-income families. This investment in human capital will make for a stronger, more secure nation.
  • Reaffirm our nation’s long-standing tradition of providing a core safety net for citizens and immigrants residing in the U.S. which will reinforce efforts to achieve national progress in health and nutrition.
  • Ensure access to key programs and public services that meet basic human needs, including health services and insurance, education, nutrition assistance, and working family tax credits.
  • Invest in robust efforts to integrate immigrants into their communities.
  • Ensure that all individuals have access to and pay their fair share for quality, affordable health care and receive medical care when they need it.

National Groups

Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum Church World Service


Coalition on Human Needs

First Focus

National Immigration Law Center

National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health



Advocacy and Training Center

Advocates for Youth


AIDS Community Research Initiative of America

AIDS United

Alliance for a Just Society

Alliance for Children and Families

Alliance of Baptists

American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME)

American Federation of Teachers

American Medical Student Association

American Sexual Health Association

America's Voice

Anti-Defamation League

Arab American Institute

Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum

Asian American Justice Center, Member of Asian American Center for Advancing Justice

Asian Pacific American Medical Student Association (APAMSA)

Association of Asian Pacific Community Health Organizations

Black Alliance for Just Immigration (BAJI)

Bread for the World


The CA Endowment

Campaign for America's Future

Campaign for Community Change

Campaign to End AIDS

CANN -Community Access National Network

The Center for APA Women

Center for Medicare Advocacy, Inc.

Change Matrix LLC

Children's Advocacy Institute

Children's Health Fund

Children's HealthWatch

The Children's Partnership

Church World Service

Civil Liberties and Public Policy Program


Coalition on Human Needs

Committee of Interns and Residents - SEIU Healthcare

Community Action Partnership

Community Catalyst

Congregation of St.Joseph

David Ostrow & Associates

Democratic Socialists of America

Dignity Health

The Episcopal Church

The Episcopal Network for Economic Justice

First Focus

Food Research and Action Center

Gilbert Law Office

Hispanic Federation

HIV Prevention Justice Alliance (HIV PJA)

Hmong National Development

Immigrant Legal Resource Center

Immigration Equality

International Union, UAW

Jewish Council for Public Affairs

Justice and Peace Center- A Ministry of the Sisters of St. Joseph-Concordia


Khmer Health Advocates, In.

Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA)

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights

Leadership Conference of Women Religious

Legion of Mary


Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service

Main Street Alliance

Migrant Clinicians Network

National Asian American Pacific Islander Mental Health Association

National Asian Pacific American Women's Forum

National Association of Council for Children

National Association of Public Hospitals and Health Systems

National Association of Social Workers

National Black Gay Men's Advocacy Coalition

National Center for Law and Economic Justice

National Center for Transgender Equality

National Community Tax Coalition

National Council of Jewish Women

National Council on Aging

The National Crittenton Foundation

National Education Association

National Gay and Lesbian Task Force

National Health Law Program

National Hispanic Media Coalition

National Immigration Law Center

National Korean American Service and Education Consortium

National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health

National Law Center on Homelessness & Poverty

National Minority AIDS Council

National Senior Citizens Law Center

National Women and AIDS Collective (NWAC)

National Women's Health Network

NETWORK, a National Catholic Social Justice Lobby

Office of Immigration and Refugee Resettlement (ABHMS)

Office of Social Justice, Christian Reformed Church in North America

Positive Women's Network- United States of America

Project Inform

Provincial Council of the Clerics of St. Viator (Viatorians)

Raising Women's Voices for the Health Care We Need

Research Institute Without Walls


Sargent Shriver National Center on Poverty Law

Service Employees International Union (SEIU)


Single Stop USA

Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia

Sisters of the Holy Cross - Congregation Justice Committee

South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT)

Southeast Asia Resource Action Center (SEARAC)

Treatment Action Group

U.S.-El Salvador Sister Cities


Union of Reform Judaism

United for a Fair Economy

United Mine Workers of America

United Neighborhood Centers of America

United Steelworkers

United We Dream


Voices for America's Children

World Education, Inc.

State/Local Groups

9to5 Atlanta

9to5 California

9to5 Colorado

9to5 Milwaukee

Action for Children North Carolina

Advocacy for Justice and Peace Committee of the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia

Advocates for Children and Youth

Advocates for Women

African Services Committee


AIDS Foundation of Chicago

AIDS Legal Council of Chicago

AIDS Resource Center Ohio

Alameda Health Consortium

Alianza del Pueblo

Alivio Medical Center

All Saints Episcopal Church, Pasadena, CA

Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment

Alliance of Filipinos for Immigrant Rights and Empowerment

American Citizens for Justice/Asian American Center for Justice

American Friends Service Committee of Western Massachusetts

Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families

Arkansas Marshallese Community

Asian American Community Services

Asian Counseling & Referral Service

Asian Health Coalition

Asian Human Services Family Health Center

Asian Law Alliance

Asian Law Caucus, member of Asian American Center for Advancing Justice

Asian Pacific American Legal Center

Asian Services In Action, Inc.

Asian-American Community Service Council

Association for Latino American Studies (ALAS)

Bay Area Immigration Taskforce

Bay Clinic, Inc.

Berkshire Immigrant Center

California Church IMPACT

California Immigrant Policy Center

California Latinas for Reproductive Justice

California Pan-Ethnic Health Network

California Primary Care Association

Cal-Islanders Humanitarian Association

Canal Alliance

CASA de Maryland

Casa Latina

Cascade AIDS Project

Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago

Center for Advocacy, Rights and Engagement

Center for Civil Justice

Center for Independent Living of South Florida, Inc.

Center for Interfaith Encounter

Center for Latino Progress - CPRF

Center for Public Policy Priorities

Central Ohio Immigrant Justice

CEO Pipe Organs/Golden Ponds Farm

Children Now

Children's Alliance

Christie's Place

CIR NOW- Comprehensive Immigration Reform

Citizen Action of New York

City of Hope

Cleveland Chinese students and professional group

CLUE Santa Barbara

Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA)

CodePink - Wichita

Collaborative Center for Justice

Colorado Center on Law and Policy

Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition

Colorado Organization for Latina Opportunity and Reproductive Rights

Communications Workers of America

Communities Creating Opportunity

Community Action Partnership of Utah

Community Legal Services, Inc.

Community Of Friends In Action

Community Service Society of New York

Comunidad Liberación/Liberation Community

Connecticut Multicultural Health Partnership

CT Asian Pacific American Affairs Commission

Dallas Fort Worth Pride Movement

Denali Family Services

Developing & Empowering Latinos In America

Dominican Development Center

Dominican Sisters of Houston

DRUM - Desis Rising Up & Moving

Earth Mama Healing, Inc,

East Central Illinois Refugee Mutual Assistance Center

El CENTRO de Igualdad y Derechos

El Quinto Sol De America

Elba Central School

Empire Justice Center


Entre Hermanos

Episcopal Church of Our Saviour/Iglesia de Nuestro Salvador

Faith Caucus - IL CBHC

Farmworker Association of Florida

Filipino Advocates for Justice

First Mexican Baptist Ch.

Florida Legal Services, Inc.


Georgia Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition

Georgia Rural Urban Summit

Grace Lutheran Church

Gray Panthers of San Francisco

Greater Rochester Coalition for Immigration Justice

Guam Communications Network

The Hat Project

Health Care For All New York

HIAS Chicago

HIAS Pennsylvania

Hispanic Alliance of Tampa Bay

Hispanic Community Dialogue Organization

Hispanic Ministry Office

HIV Law Project

Housing Works

Houston Community Services

Iglesia Bautista

Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights

Illinois Conference UCC Immigration Task Force

Immigrant Law Center of Minnesota

Immigrant Service Providers Group/Health

Immigration Advocacy Matters

Immigration Rights Task Force of the Unitarian Society of New Haven

Immigration Service and Aid Center (ISAAC)

Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement

Jewish Community Action

Jones and Chao, P.C.

Kentucky Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights

Kentucky Equal Justice Center

Kentucky Youth Advocates

Kitsap Immigrant Assistance Center

Kokua Kalihi Valley

Ko'olauloa Community Health and Wellness Center

Korean Community Center of the East Bay

Korean Resource Center

L.A Community Legal Center and Educational

La Esperanza

Las Americas Immigrant Advocacy Center

Latin American Association

Latino Coalition for a Healthy California

Latino Community Roundtable

Latino Education & Training Institute

Libreria Del Pueblo, Inc.

Lifelong AIDS Alliance

Lifting Latina Voices Initiative

Little Sisters of the Assumption Family Health Service

Lowcountry Immigration Coalition

LULAC Council # 7226


Lupus Foundation of Northern California

Make the Road New York

Maria Sanchez-Ley Law Office

Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition

Massachusetts Law Reform Institute

Maxwell Street Legal Clinic

Migrant Support Services of Wayne Co. NY

Minnesota AIDS Project

Mississippi Immigrants Rights Alliance

Modesto Peace/Life Center

My Language link

National Council of Jewish Women, Concordia Section

National Council of Jewish Women, Los Angeles Section

National Council of Jewish Women, Cleveland Section

National Council of Jewish Women, Greater Houston Section

National Council of Jewish Women, Illinois State Policy Advocacy Chair

National Council of Jewish Women, Long Beach Section

National Council of Jewish Women, Missouri State Policy Advocacy Chair

National Council of Jewish Women, Peninsula Section

National Council of Jewish Women, Rhode Island Section

National Council of Jewish Women, Texas State Policy Advocacy Co-Chair

National Council of Jewish Women, Utah Section

National Council of Jewish Women, Valencia Shores Section

National Council of Jewish Women, Greater Detroit Section

National Council of Jewish Women, California

National Council of Jewish Women, St. Louis Section

National Immigration Reform Advocates

National Latino AIDS Action Network

National Tongan American Society

Nations of Micronesia Committee

New Haven Peoples Center

New Mexico Center on Law and Poverty

New York Immigration Coalition

New York Lawyers for the Public Interest

New Yorkers for Accessible Health Coverage

NH Alliance for Immigrants and Refugees

NM Asian Family Center (NMAFC)

NOELA Community Health Center

North Carolina Council of Churches

Northwest Immigrant Rights Project

Ohio AIDS Coalition

Ohio Asian American Health Coalition


Open Door Clinic

Oregon New Sanctuary Movement

Pacific Islander Cancer Survivors Network

Pacific Islander Health Partnership

Pax Christi DuPage County

Pennsylvania Council of Churches

PICO California

Pilgrim Congregational UCC

Prevention Point Philadelphia

Reformed Church of Highland Park, NJ

The River Fund

San Diego Hunger Coalition

San Ysidro Health Center

Services for the Advancement of Women-SEPA Mujer

Servicios de La Raza

Sierra Italia, Inc.

Silicon Valley Alliance for Immigration Reform

Sisters of Mercy West Midwest Justice Team

Skagit Immigrant Rights Council

Social Justice Ministry of Sacred Heart Catholic Church

St Louis Inter-Faith Committee on Latin America

Street Level Health Project

Tennessee Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition

Triumph Treatment Services

Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the Lowcountry

United Church of Christ

Unity Fellowship of Christ Church NYC in Brooklyn

University of Colorado

University of Hawaii

UNO Federation Community Services

Virginia Organizing

Vision y Compromiso

Voces de la Frontera

Waimanalo Health Center

Washington Community Action Network!

Washtenaw Interfaith Coalition for Immigrant Rights

Wayne Action for Racial Equality

Weber County Democrats

Westchester for Change

Western Center on Law and Poverty

Wisconsin Council on Children and Families

WV FREE Advocates for Reproductive Health, Rights and Justice

Xaverian Brothers

Yakutat Healthy Community Coalition

YWCA Tulsa-Immigrant Program


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By Debra L. Ness, President, National Partnership for Women & Families

This year is the 20th anniversary of the signing of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) – the nation’s first ever law to help working people manage the dual demands of job and family. It is a time to celebrate the tremendous impact the law has had on workers, their families and our nation’s culture, but it is also a time to reflect on how far we still have to go.

In the past 20 years, the FMLA has been used more than 100 million times by mothers and fathers to care for their new babies, by adult children to care for their seriously ill parents, by women with complicated pregnancies, by men with serious medical conditions and more. The FMLA has meant that people across the country have been able to care for their health and be with their family members, without worrying about losing their jobs or their health insurance.

But the FMLA was always meant to be just a first step toward a family friendly America. And in 20 years, we have failed to take another one. As a result, 40 percent of the workforce still has no access to the unpaid leave the FMLA provides, and millions more simply cannot afford to take it. This leaves tens of millions of families without the basic support and protections they need to provide for their families and be the kind of employees and family members they want to be.

Latino workers and their families feel the pressure of the nation’s out-of-date polices more than most. New data from the Labor Department show that Latinos are among the workers most likely to report not taking FMLA leave even though they were eligible. And Latinos are the least likely racial or ethnic group to have access to any type of time off of work – paid or unpaid. At a time when families are increasingly dependent on two incomes and every paycheck counts, no worker should have to put his or her job and family’s economic security on the line when serious and often unavoidable medical needs arise.  

That is why it is critical that Congress and the president move the country forward by advancing common sense, reasonable proposals to expand the FMLA, to cover more workers for more reasons, and to establish a paid family and medical leave insurance program. These proposals would benefit workers, their families, businesses and our national economy. They also have the overwhelming support of the public, including 95 percent of Latino voters who support paid family and medical leave insurance and paid sick days laws (79 percent very strongly).

It is long past time for America to be a nation where all working families are able to care for their health and their families without risking their financial security. Let’s make the most of this historic anniversary by calling on all our elected officials to take the next step toward the family friendly America people urgently need. It has been 20 years. It’s time.


To find out more or get involved, visit www.NationalPartnership.org/FMLA.  

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 5 Things to Know About Immigration Reform 2013

b2ap3_thumbnail_LCLAA-Worlds-Logo.JPG Both Congress and the President are promising tough but fair measures. Yet, the tough policy proposals that are currently at play are not so fair. Consider this infographic from the folks at Color Lines on Eight Ways to Shrink Immigration Reform: 


Read more here!


b2ap3_thumbnail_LCLAA-Worlds-Logo.JPG  The back of the line lines looks like this:


PDF Version here!

Courtesy of this WONKBLOG of the Washington Post.

Or consider this flash from the infographic past:



b2ap3_thumbnail_LCLAA-Worlds-Logo.JPG Immigration Reform = $1.5 trillion to U.S. GDP + Billions in Tax Revenue.  

           Educated DREAMers à Higher earnings = Economic boost for all.

More on how Immigrants are makers not takers here!

b2ap3_thumbnail_LCLAA-Worlds-Logo.JPGWe spent more on immigration enforcement than on the FBI, Drug Enforcement Administration, Secret Service, U.S. Marshals Service, and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives….COMBINED. 24% More to be exact.

I made my own info graphic for this one:


Read more here!

The border is more secure than it has ever been. To state that we need to address this first is to reuse a broken crutch that keeps us from standing on our own and addressing comprehensive immigration reform. That was 2007. This is now. #ImmigrationReform2013

b2ap3_thumbnail_LCLAA-Worlds-Logo.JPG  Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals was granted to eligible undocumented youth who were brought to the United States at an early age. There is consensus on both sides of the congressional aisle to allow DACAmented youth to immediately start their path towards citizenship.

Many of these young applicants have already undergone a thorough screening and back ground check with USCIS and have received their work permits. After the lengthy process, a lucky few are studying for road tests and finally experiencing every American 16 year old’s dream of getting a Driver’s License. Yet, there are many young immigrants who qualify for deferred action in every way, but in age. We should remove the age cap and allow these would-be-DACAmented to apply and move forward in their path to citizenship along with the current applicants.

b2ap3_thumbnail_LCLAA-Worlds-Logo.JPG All of these enforcement only policies are increasing the vulnerability of Latino workers. Undocumented Latina workers fare even worse.


Read LCLAA’s Trabajadoras report for more on the challenges and conditions of Latina immigrant workers in the U.S. (Chapter Five)


For more on Latino workers as a whole, read our Latino Workers in the United States report released in 2011.

Consider these facts as you listen to leaders drafting and encouraging immigration reform legislation. Speak up when you think they/anyone needs a reminder of these facts.  

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On January 2, 2012, Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano, announced a final rule in the Federal Register that reduces the time some U.S. citizens are separated from their immediate relatives (spouse, children, and parents), who are in the process of obtaining a visa to become a lawful permanent resident (“green card holder”).
Under current immigrant law, certain undocumented immigrants that are immediate relatives of U.S. citizens are not eligible to adjust their immigration status in the United States to become a lawful permanent resident, and must leave the U.S. to obtain an immigrant visa. The challenge facing these individuals, which has effectively kept many immediate relatives of U.S. citizens from adjusting their immigration status, is a three or ten year ban that immigration law imposes on certain individuals who leave the United States after having lived in the U.S. as undocumented immigrants. Under the new process, undocumented immigrants would be seeking a waiver to the ban before they leave the United States, so that they can pursue legal permanent residency in the U.S.
Beginning March 4, 2013, certain undocumented immigrants will be able to apply for a provisional “unlawful presence” waiver before they depart the United States to attend immigrant visa interviews in their countries of origin.  More information about the filing process will be made available in the coming weeks at www.uscis.gov.
“This final rule facilitates the legal immigration process and reduces the amount of time that U.S. citizens are separated from their immediate relatives who are in the process of obtaining an immigrant visa,” said Secretary Napolitano.
“The law is designed to avoid extreme hardship to U.S. citizens, which is precisely what this rule achieves,” USCIS Director Mayorkas said. “The change will have a significant impact on American families by greatly reducing the time family members are separated from those they rely upon.”
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The labor movement has a rich history in the state of Michigan. On Tuesday that history was dealt a major blow. The Michigan legislature rammed through and the Governor signed “freedom to work” (freedom to freeload) legislation into law. No committee hearings, no public debate, lock the doors to the capital and hide behind the heavily guarded doors and pass whatever laws you can during a lame duck session. Frightening!

 For those of us that spent several days chanting, singing, making phone calls, meeting with our legislators and planning the rally that brought nearly 20,000 workers to the steps of and inside the capital; it is almost enough to make us want to give up.

b2ap3_thumbnail_blog-pic-1.jpg(Left-UAW Vice President Cindy Estrada is interviewed; right-Greater Lansing LCLAA Vice President Michael Huerta protesting at the Michigan state capital)

We in the labor movement have a habit of losing perspective. We often forget the long hours and hard work that made our victories possible. Can you imagine a world in which Dr. King had given up after the first time he met opposition? 


Can you imagine a world in which Cesar Chavez and the UFW’s demands weren't met they gave up during the grape boycotts? (the boycott lasted 10 years)

b2ap3_thumbnail_blog-pic-3.jpg Can you imagine a world where Owen Beiber, of the UAW, had never pressured the Apartheid regime in South Africa to release Nelson Mandella or had given up the first time he was rebuffed?



Can you imagine a world without child labor laws, safety standards, Civil Rights, human rights and workers’ rights? We are a part of something much bigger than we imagine. We are a part of a movement. Our struggles will continue long after we are gone and they began long before we were born. Our rich legacy that provided us with the labor laws, workplace safety, vacations, benefits and wages demands that we continue to fight. We must also remember that we forge the legacy that future generations will battle to keep. As Dr. King reminded us “the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” We must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off and continue the work of the labor movement. Temporary setbacks are just that – temporary. The long lists of contributions from labor to the world were all earned through hard work, long battles and patience.  It is our responsibility to continue these struggles - this is the cost of our legacy! 



Michigan Right to Work Rally in front of State Capitol.

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El 15 de junio del 2012, el Departamento de Seguridad Interna de Estados Unidos (DHS por sus siglas en inglés) anunció una nueva política  conocida como “acción diferida para los llegados en la infancia” o deferred action for childhoold arrivals (DACA por sus siglas en inglés). La política de DACA permite suspender temporalmente las deportaciones de ciertos jóvenes y estudiantes indocumentados que cumplen con los requisitos. Para obtener más información sobre la política de DACA y como determinar si usted es elegible para aplicar y que pasos debe seguir, por favor visite el sitio web de la Oficina de Ciudadania y Servicios Migratorios (USCIS):: www.uscis.gov/childhoodarrivals

Si eres un soñador que fue aprobado para obtener DACA y ya tiene un número de identificación personal contribuyente (ITIN ), hay algunos pasos que debe de seguir:

1) Solicitar un Número de Seguro Social (SSN);

2) Transferir su historial de crédito ITIN a su nuevo número

3) Ponerse en contacto con la oficina del Servicio de Impuestos Internos (IRS) para rescindir su ITIN.

Para mas informacion de ITIN, por favor visite:

  • http://www.irs.gov/Spanish/N%C3%BAmero-de-Identificaci%C3%B3n-Personal-del-Contribuyente-(ITIN)-1

La mayoría de los estadounidenses indocumentados no son elegibles para un SSN pero si son elegibles para un Número de Identificación Personal Contribuyente (ITIN). El ITIN es un número de identificación personal expedido por el Servicio de Impuestos Internos para los extranjeros en los Estados Unidos que les permite declarar y pagar impuestos. Con un ITIN, las personas pueden aprovechar ciertas oportunidades financieras, tales como la solicitud de tarjetas de crédito y la obtención de préstamos. Por lo tanto, muchos soñadores que cuentan con su ITIN tienen un historial crediticio amplio que han construido en los últimos años.

Los soñadores con acción diferida son elegibles para solicitar un número de Seguro Social (SSN) y deben transferir su actual historial crediticio a ese número. Además, los  soñadores también deben comunicarse con el IRS para cancelar su ITIN existente ya que ninguna persona puede contar con un numero de Seguro social y un ITIN al mismo tiempo.

(oprimir "continue reading" para lear el resto del articulo)

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Last updated 12/22/2012

On June 15, 2012, the Obama Administration announced Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), a new administrative policy which would grant deferred status to certain undocumented Americans who met a series of requirements. For more information on DACA, including determining whether you are eligible and what steps you can take to apply, please visit the USCIS’s website: www.uscis.gov/childhoodarrivals.

If you’re a DREAMer that was approved for DACA and have an individual tax identification number (ITIN), there are a few key steps that you should take next, including:

1) Applying for a Social Security Number (SSN);

2) Transferring your ITIN credit history to your new SSN; and

3) Contacting the IRS to rescind your ITIN.

Most undocumented Americans are not eligible for a SSN but are eligible for an Individual Tax Identification Number. An ITIN is a tax identification number issued by the Internal Revenue Service to foreign nationals in the United States that allows them to file and pay taxes. With an ITIN, individuals can take advantage of certain financial opportunities, such as applying for credit cards and obtaining loans. Thus, many DREAMers with ITINs have extensive credit histories that they’ve built over the past few years.

DREAMers with deferred action are eligible to apply for a SSN and should transfer their existing credit history to that number. Additionally, DREAMers must also contact the IRS to rescind their existing ITIN as an individual cannot an ITIN and Social Security number at the same time.

(click on continue reading for the rest of the guide)

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Today's guest post is by Jessica González-Rojas, Executive Director of the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health and was originally published on December 6, 2012 at Fox News Latino.

How does the looming “fiscal cliff,” which threatens to raise taxes on just about everyone and reduce essential services, impact Latinas? Given that Latinas have barely been mentioned in the media firestorm about the looming budget crisis, it’s not surprising many of us aren’t thinking of this as one of our issues. But the stakes for Latinas and their families are disproportionately enormous.

Many Latinas already face a “fiscal cliff,” living month to month with no safety net. This includes families across the income spectrum, from poor to middle class families, who are just one mishap away from financial collapse, whether it be a job layoff or a sick child or the mundane roadblocks like a pricey car repair that means some months the ends just don’t meet. In fact, studies show that Latino families that self-define as middle class in reality have fewer financial resources than white families who consider themselves middle class. It is families like these, those at most risk of economic collapse, that will be most impacted by a “fiscal cliff” that raises taxes and eliminates essential services.

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 En vísperas del día de acción de gracias LCLAA quiere mostrar su apoyo a todos los trabajadores que han decidido irse a huelga para protestar y poner fin a todos los abusos en el trabajo.   Este Black Friday, miles de trabajadores de Wal-Mart van para protestar contra las malas condiciones de trabajo bajo las que se encuentran. Ellos no piden mucho, pero lo necesario para tener un trabajo digno y una mejor calidad de vida.

¿Qué quieren los trabajadores de la trasnacional más grande del mundo?

Mejores salarios, ¿por qué? El salario promedio es de $8.81 dólares la hora.

Horarios de trabajo justos ¿por qué? Los trabajadores se ven obligados a laborar en horarios "flexibles", lo que significa turnos más cortos que dificulta que organicen su vida diaria familiar. 

Accesibilidad a un sistema de salud, ¿por qué? En dos años, Wal-Mart ha elevado dos veces el número de horas que los empleados de medio tiempo deben de tener para tener beneficios de seguro social y médico.

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This black Friday, thousands of Wal-Mart workers will hit the streets to protest the unfair working environment. The workers don’t ask much but the necessary to improve their lives.

What do Wal-Mart workers want?

Better pay, why? Because the wages average is just $8.81/hour.

Fair Schedules, why? Because Workers are forced into “flexible” which means shorter shifts making it difficult to schedule their lives

Affordable health care, why? Because in two years Wal-Mart has twice raised the number of hours that part-time employees need to qualify for health benefits. 


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The DREAM Bar Association, a bar association for undocumented lawyers and law students, hosted its first press conference where it announced the launch of its “DREAM Lawyers” campaign and featured undocumented students which graduated from law school and are currently are seeking to obtain their law license.  

The DREAM Lawyers campaign would involve lobbying all 50 states to grant admission to undocumented lawyers and use research, advocacy, and litigation in order to ensure that law licensing were available to all qualified individuals regardless of immigration status.

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On Election Day LCLAA was in multiple states, canvassing, getting out the vote, and conducting election protection. LCLAA was active throughout Virginia with staff functioning as election monitors. At various locations throughout Virginia, LCLAA staff handed out Voter Bill of Rights which detailed every right a voter had and resources for any individual that had trouble voting. Additionally, LCLAA conducted non-partisan poll watching where it observed polling locations throughout Virginia to ensure that all voters had their voices heard and there were no voting irregularities. 

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Today's post is a guest blog post by Vanessa Gonzalez-Plumhoff, Director of Latino Leadership and Engagement at Planned Parenthood Federation of America. You can email her at Vanessa.Gonzalez@ppfa.org.

It is no surprise that working long hours to provide for our families leaves many of us without the time to make our health care a priority.  Between work, taking care of our families, and paying bills, it’s not only hard finding the time to head to a doctor’s office and sit for hours in a waiting room, but for many, it’s hard to imagine losing pay with the additional stress of the costs of daycare, transportation, and paying for a visit — especially without health insurance.  This is where Planned Parenthood can help. 

Planned Parenthood’s doors are open for all those times when a member of our family, or friend, offers a loving “¿como te sientes?”  Services include a range of preventive services, such as screenings for cancer, testing and treatment of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), birth control, and basic women’s health care, as well as medically accurate sex education to millions of people each year.  Many health centers also provide affordable services on a sliding scale.

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Last week, voters faced unacceptable delays to cast a ballot. Some people waited up to 9 hours to vote. In Miami, many stayed in line until 1 AM at night in order to vote.

That's just not right! Tell Governor Rick Scott that no one should have to wait so long to vote.

There are stories around the state about voters waiting unacceptable amounts of time to vote. One man near Fort Myers even lost his job after he was stuck in line for three hours and couldn't make it to work. He got pink slipped by Pink Slip Rick's voter suppression. And then there are many other people waited silently, uncomplainingly for far too long in order to make their vote count.

These problems weren't inevitable; the entire early voting mess was created by Rick Scott. In 2008, Florida had 14 days of early voting but Governor Rick Scott shortened that to only the final eight days. Even when numerous Supervisors of Elections warned of problems and urged Scott to allow more early voting, he ignored them.

Hours-long lines to vote are wrong! Call on Rick Scott to expand the early voting system.

No one should be forced to sit in line for hours to exercise their right to vote. Rick Scott has already said he's willing to consider changing so we're going to hold him to it! Urge Rick Scott to expand the early voting system, so that next time, we aren't forced to wait in line for hours to exercise our right to vote.


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Voter protection groups across the state are calling for complete election reform in Florida.

Last Tuesday, some central Floridians stood in line for four hours trying to cast their ballots.

It was a coalition of community organizations headed up the League of Women Voters who held a news conference demanding Florida reform its election system.

"Today we all come together with a joint call for the governor and Legislature to join together with a joint will that they too agree that election reform is needed in Florida," said League of Women Voters President Deirdre McNab.  "They must agree what happened last week in Florida will never happen again."

The speakers, representing groups from AARP to the ACLU cried foul over the long lines at some polling places last week, the delayed counts for absentee ballots and the high amount of provisional ballots cast.  They want the governor to form a bipartisan task force to study the issue and report its recommendations no later than two weeks before the next legislative session. 

The group's list of complaints was long and included a too long ballot and poll workers not equipped to deal with voter questions. They blamed much of the trouble on election laws passed by the Republican lead Florida Legislature in 2011 that shortened the number of days for early voting from 14 to eight.

"We warned the legislature that this would create a problem, hardship for historically ethnic and minority groups and they didn't listen," said ACLU spokeswoman Joyce Hamilton Henry.

Many speakers also claimed the problems disproportionately affected minority voters.

"Obviously, Florida now is the butt of every late night host's jokes as the state that can't count right," said the Rev. Randolph Bracy of the New Covenant Baptist Church.  "And it is my prayer that starting from the Gov. and the Legislator that a word has been sent across the bow. Florida, let us not be the butt of everybody's jokes but lets get it right."


Click on the above image to watch the news report of groups calling for voting reform.


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Election Day is around the corner, enthusiasm in swing states is higher than it is anywhere else and the Latino electorate continues to be one of the most important stories in many battleground states across the country.  It is estimated that just over 12.2 million Latinos will vote on Tuesday, November 6, an increase of 22% over 2008.  In states like Virginia the Latino vote is less than 3% but it is still consider one of the top 10 states with high concentration of Latino voters and our political priorities could determine the election result, since it is expected to be a very tight race between the two candidates.  When you have a race this close in swing states every single vote can make a difference, in this context the Latino vote could play a central role defining this election. 


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The House of Latino Labor is proud to announce the official launch of its 40th Anniversary Website! In this important occasion, LCLAA is announcing the debut of our brand new bilingual website which contains a blog with the latest labor updates, a vast array of social networking tools and media, and independent sites for LCLAA’s campaigns. In a time when Latinos are, on average, ten years younger than the rest of the population, and where a large portion of political advocacy takes place online, an effective and streamlined website that communicates with key constituencies is essential to aggressively protecting Latino worker’s rights. The bilingual website will allow individuals to quickly access videos of LCLAA’s latest actions, photo albums of advocacy events, learn more about LCLAA’s campaigns and efforts to improve conditions for Latino workers, and share this content with their friends using unique social media and educational tools.

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