Hispanic Organizations Launch National Latino Coalition on Climate Change

WashingtonAs climate change poses significant challenges and opportunities for low income and minority communities, Hispanic organizations join forces to launch the National Latino Coalition on Climate Change (NLCCC).  The National Hispanic Environmental Council (NHEC), the National Puerto Rican Coalition (NPRC), and the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement (LCLAA) are working collaboratively to ensure that Latinos have an integral voice in the national dialogue on climate change.  Other national Latino organizations are expected to soon join the NLCCC. 

“Across our nation, minority and low-income communities are on the frontline of environmental exposures, negatively impacting their health and economic security. As we develop policies to protect these communities from the impacts of climate change, the policy discussion must be as diverse as the communities it intends to impact,” said Congresswoman Hilda L. Solis (D-CA) Chair of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Task Force on Health and the Environment.  “I welcome the National Latino Coalition on Climate Change to the table and urge Latinos across our nation to make their voices heard in the search for solution to this pressing issue.”

Roger Rivera, President of NHEC and Chairman of the NLCCC said, “Global warming will have distinct and disproportionate impacts on Latinos, from a wide range of environmental, health, economic, and societal perspectives.   Given this, it is imperative that Latinos be a part of the on-going national global warming debate.  I’m extremely pleased that NHEC, NPRC, and LCLAA have come together to ensure our community has a voice, and a seat, at the environmental decision-making table”.       

The NLCCC seeks to address issues of climate change in Latino communities across the country by building a collaborative effort among national, regional, and local Latino leaders and organizations.  “LCLAA is proud to be a part of this coalition because it places an emphasis on convening diverse perspectives that will enhance the national dialogue on climate change by empowering Latinos with information about how it will affect us, why we should care about the environment, and what we can do to protect it”, Dr. Gabriela Lemus, Executive Director of the Labor Council on Latin American Advancement. 

The goal of the group is to help raise awareness about global warming in Latino communities and to build the capacity needed to support grassroots advocacy efforts through research, policy, and educational outreach.  “While the debate on global climate issues has focused on important environmental policy concerns, these discussions have not addressed the impact on minority communities.  As a result, many Latinos are not aware of the issues and their impact on their communities and lives.  Our efforts will help bring attention to and increase understanding of climate change issues within the Hispanic community”, said Manny Mirabal, President of the National Puerto Rican Coalition.

Over the next year, the NLCCC will undertake a number of initiatives that will inform and engage our community on this profoundly important issue.    These include the convening of a series of Regional Latino Leadership Briefings on Global Warming, in key cities across the U.S., which will feature top issue experts, elected officials, community leaders, and others.  The first of these events, the Northeast Regional Latino Leadership Briefing, will be held on Friday, October 26th in Hartford, CT, at the NPCR 30th Annual Conference.  

Rivera also said that the NLCCC will create a “National Latino Advisory Committee on Global Warming”, so that top Latino scientists, economists, business leaders, health experts, and others with expertise on climate change can contribute their knowledge to the NLCCC, and help our community explore the issues, identify the challenges, and seek solutions for the Latino community on global warming.   Fundamentally, the NLCCC is an effort to ensure that Latinos can “speak and do for ourselves” in the present and future national policy debate on global warming.       

SOURCE: [email protected]

You must be logged in to post a comment Login