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HF Attends Green Latinos Summit

This summer, the National Park Service will celebrate 100 years of dedication to America’s green spaces. While these parks, monuments, and national treasures are open to all, they don’t always feel accessible to our communities. Yet research shows that the environment is an area of great concern to Latinos. That’s why we were so excited to participate in the Green Latinos Summit this year in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

Highlighting the successes of coordinated advocacy, HF’s Director of National Advocacy Laura Esquivel was a panelist for A Year in Review: Looking Back on our Shared Coalition Work, and spoke about the work Latino organizations did to ask Congress to reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). “We were proud that we were able to lead a broad Latino advocacy campaign in support of LWCF and help finally reauthorize the Fund in 2015. Our voice and collective is growing stronger and overall that is just great news for our nation’s environmental movement,” said Esquivel. Hispanic Federation worked as part of the Latino Conservation Alliance, consisting of six Latino nonprofits—including Green Latinos—advocating for and educating communities on the importance of land protection and conservation to Latinos.

As a keynote speaker, HF President José Calderón spoke about his personal journey into environmental advocacy, and why it’s so important for Latino organizations to prioritize the creation and preservation of green spaces. “Environmental justice is an issue of social justice that affects the very health, standard of living and economic future of our community,” said Calderón. “When we decided to increase our environmental advocacy, we didn’t see it as a choice but as a mandate necessary to fulfill our mission of advancing and empowering the Latino community.”