Seeks to “empower and advance the Hispanic community” through grantmaking
Engages in voter-registration drives, congressional lobbying, leadership training, and issue advocacy
The Hispanic Federation (HF) was established in 1990 when a group of Latino leaders created the Hispanic Federation of New York City, which consisted of six member agencies. Today HF is national in its scope. To view a comprehensive list of its nearly 100 member agencies—one of which is LatinoJustice PRLDF—click here.
HF issues grants to a broad network of Latino nonprofit groups “serving the most vulnerable members of the Hispanic community.” It also “advocates nationally” on various key issues through the following programs:
1) The Civic Engagement program seeks to increase the participation of Latinos—who overwhelmingly support Democratic policies and candidates—in the American political process. Over the years, this initiative has registered hundreds of thousands of Latino voters and coordinated many “get-out-the-vote” campaigns targeting that demographic.
2) The Federal Advocacy program consists of several projects that heavily emphasize the role of big government and massive public expenditures:
The Civic Participation project aims to combat “the wave of voter suppression legislation being passed or introduced in states across the nation”—most notably Voter ID laws, which HF views as racially motivated attempts to deny voting rights to nonwhite minorities.
The Economic Development & Security project calls for “strengthening and fully funding safety-net programs” such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, Unemployment Insurance, Social Security, and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, all of which “are essential to the livelihood of millions of Latino[s].” It also advocates for more federally funding job training, neighborhood revitalization, Community Development Block Grants, and Latino-oriented classes in English, GED exam preparation, and vocational training.
The Education project supports policies that promote increased public funding for early-childhood education (e.g., Head Start and Early Head Start), K-12 public schools, and after-school/academic-enrichment programs—particularly those that “address the educational needs of immigrants, English language learners, migrant families, and children with special needs.” Moreover, HF supports DREAM Act legislation that would enable illegal-immigrant students to access financial assistance, tuition discounts, and scholarship opportunities for their college education.
The Energy & Environment project contends that “communities of color are in many instances overlooked both for opportunities in emerging green industries and with respect to enforcement of environmental standards,” and seeks to remedy these problems.
The Health Access & Disparities project laments that “Latinos continue to face serious health disparities and alarming gaps in accessing health insurance and high quality health care,” but praises the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) for providing “a necessary path forward to address some of these concerns.”
The Immigration & Citizenship project demands that Congress provide “a pathway to citizenship” for the millions of “undocumented immigrants” currently residing in the United States, and advocates making “family reunification”—whereby the foreign relatives of U.S.-based illegals are allowed to join the latter on a permanent basis—a high priority for future immigration policy.
The Philanthropy & Corporate Responsibility project advocates for legislative policies that “encourage community reinvestment in all industries, reduce barriers and increase incentives for corporate giving, and help to focus charitable contributions to traditionally underserved communities.”
3) In partnership with the School of Public Affairs at Baruch College, HF operates its own Hispanic Leadership Institute which aims to help Latino nonprofit leaders improve their management skills and enhance the effectiveness of their organizations. The overarching objective is to “strengthen institutions that advance the quality of life of the Latino community.”
4) Each year on October 15, HF sponsors a National Latino AIDS Awareness Day to focus public attention on the fact that HIV infection has had “a devastating and disproportionate impact on the Latino community.”
6) The Reproductive Health program seeks to educate Latino women about parenting and pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, contraceptive use, changes in healthcare legislation, access to abortion services, and disparities in healthcare across racial and ethnic lines.
HF also administers a locally-based Economic Empowerment program committed to “promoting the economic well being of the Latino community” by means of personal finance workshops, business start-up trainings, homeownership classes, and educational initiatives that teach Hispanic Americans how to access credit, capital, and financial services.
HF receives funding from dozens of major corporations and foundations, including such notables as AARP, AT&T, the Aetna Foundation, Bank of America, Capital One, the Citi Foundation, the Coca-Cola Company, Comcast Corporation, Con Edison, Delta Air Lines, the Ford Foundation, Pfizer, Prudential Financial, Southwest Airlines, Time Warner Cable, Univision Communications, the Verizon Foundation, Walmart, Wells Fargo, Western Union, and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. For a comprehensive list of HF's funders, click here.
 In April 2013, HF welcomed the introduction of a bipartisan immigration-reform bill in the U.S. Senate, which called for the creation of a 13-year path-to-citizenship for illegal immigrants. Though that waiting period was, by HF's reckoning, “longer than we would like,” the Federation was pleased by the fact that “for DREAMers and agricultural workers the pathway is shorter.” HF president José Calderón, for his part, was “deeply concerned” by the bill's “emphasis [on] merit-based immigration over family ties” and its “excessive burdens, border security triggers, and penalties that threaten to keep immigrants in the shadows rather than on a pathway to earned citizenship.”
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