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Lucha Contra el Hambre Expands to Central Florida PDF Print E-mail

Hotels with names like Xanadu Motel or the Paradise Inn line the highways in Orlando Florida which lead to the magical Disney World Resort. Yet behind this fantasy world is a stark reality: Many of these hotels are serving as transitional housing for those unable to afford apartments or homes. And these families – many of which are Puerto Ricans escaping their island’s economic crisis - struggle to feed themselves and their children.

It is in the midst of plenty during this Thanksgiving season that the reality of homelessness and hunger feels especially painful. That’s why on Saturday, November 21 the Hispanic Federation, in partnership with Ford Motor Company Fund, kicked off its Lucha Contra el Hambre hunger relief expansion campaign into Central Florida. It was just one in a series of emergency relief assistance initiatives Hispanic Federation has planned in Central Florida. 

ACA Open Enrollment for 2016 Begins PDF Print E-mail

Latinos suffer disproportionate levels of obesity, diabetes, asthma, and other health epidemics that are the result of many socio-economic barriers, but can be managed and prevented through access to affordable and quality care. Thanks to the rollout of the Affordable Care Act, that access has increased greatly, and we’re proud to be a part of it. Since 2012, we’ve enrolled over 20,000 individuals and each year we look to increase that number significantly.

Open enrollment began on November 1st for 2016, and we’re thrilled to continue our work increasing access to healthcare. While the work of our Navigators—our street teams dedicated to health insurance education, access, and enrollment—is year-round, the beginning of a new enrollment period is a time for us to renew our commitment to health insurance for all. In order to reach our goals, we have partnered with four community-based organizations in New York throughout all five boroughs: Dominican Women’s Development Center, Puerto Rican Family Institute, Ryan-NENA, and Urban Health Plan.

HF Focuses on Voter Registration PDF Print E-mail

The Latino electorate has grown over the past decade to become an essential voting block in municipal, state-wide and presidential elections.  Strategically located, dynamic and growing, Latino voters have the power to determine our nation's next President. However, before that happens we need to make sure Latino citizens of voting age are engaged, mobilized and empowered to exercise their true power. While there are more than 20 million Latinos eligible to vote in the United States, Latino voter turnout rates lag behind other racial and ethnic groups.

The work being carried out by Latino nonprofits like HF - and the incredible commitment of Univision 41 and Telemundo 47 to drive Hispanic voter mobilization - raise hopes that Latino political engagement will grow dramatically. Thanks in large part to these local and national efforts, Latino voters represented 11 percent of the electorate.

Latino Leaders to Washington: Support Puerto Rico PDF Print E-mail

In several cities across the nation today, Latino leaders and allies assembled to send a unified message to President Obama and Congress: Support Puerto Rico and its 3.5 million U.S. Citizens. As Puerto Rico continues to endure a growing economic crisis that includes a $73 billion debt, major unemployment and population drain, Puerto Ricans and Latinos on the mainland are growing impatient with Washington as leaders have failed to step up to assist millions of American citizens living on the island.

On Health Care, HF Expands Education, Training and Enrollment PDF Print E-mail

No single social safety net program in the last 25 years will have a more direct and lasting impact on Latino families in the United States than the Affordable Care Act.  For the millions of uninsured Latinos in the country, the ACA has been nothing short of revolutionary. Individuals and families that lived fearful that one accident or prolonged illness could lead to financial ruin now have the security of knowing that affordable and quality health care is within reach.

Hispanic Federation has worked on two projects during the first half of 2015 that helped Latinos access health care:

The HF’s Latino Affordable Care Act (ACA) Education Campaign focused on promoting Latino awareness of the new health care law through community mobilization and media outreach.  Funded in part by AARP, the program focused on raising awareness of ACA among uninsured Latinos in four key states: New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Florida.  The results of the program speak for themselves.  Nearly 35,000 Latinos were directly contacted during the 2014-2015 enrollment cycle. Moreover, we reached 4.7 million media contacts through our public education campaign, an expansion of 2.9 million over the first year of the program.  “We know that ACA and the Latino community need each other to succeed,” said HF Director of Health Advocacy Samantha Paz.  “This multi-state program was able to raise awareness in key states and we think that played a major role in the early success of the ACA.”

In addition to the ACA, HF is a leader in the NYS Health Exchange Navigator Program.  HF helps low-income New York City Latinos and their families enroll into free or low-cost health programs such as Child Health Plus, Medicaid and Qualified Health Plans.  The program is funded through the NYS Department of Health and includes a number of community partners such as Dominican Women's Development Center, Puerto Rican Family Institute, Ryan Nena Health Center and Urban Health Plan.

Since the start of the program in 2014, HF has helped nearly 18,000 Latinos and their families obtain affordable health insurance. Since January, 2015 we’ve helped another 6,200 obtain health insurance and expect that number to reach over 10,000 by year’s end.

“Helping New York City’s Latinos get access to health care is critically important to the well-being of the community,” said Liliana Melgar, HF’s Director of Health Programs.  “We’re lucky to partner with some of our communities most respected community organizations on this project.  It’s because of their hard work and commitment that we have been so successful.”

While we are proud to champion ACA and work to increase access and enrollment to the program, we are mindful that these benefits do not extend to undocumented immigrants. Should these individuals require medical attention, we encourage them to call (866) HF-AYUDA so we can put them in contact with a healthcare provider.

For more information, please contact Liliana Melgar

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