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It's Hispanic Heritage Month and MomsRising is celebrating by hosting a blog carnival that highlights the many, spectacular contributions our members and allies in the Latino community have made on the MomsRising blog and in the media. Hispanic Heritage Month is also a moment for us to reflect on the upcoming elections and the work that lies ahead to make our families, communities, and country even stronger together.

The election is drawing near, and record voter turnout is expected with friends, family, and neighbors in our communities voting. You and your loved ones can register to vote through MomsRising. If you have any questions about voting, please call this toll free number at 1-866-OUR-VOTE.

The trajectory we take as an organization and as a country depends on you...your vote. ¡Nuestro voto es nuestra voz!

Health Care

Senator Robert Menendez, "The Affordable Care Act and Latino Families"
"This law will extend coverage to millions of Americans, including Hispanics, and improve the quality of coverage for those who already have it."

Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis, "The Affordable Care Act and Women -- Two Years On and Working Strong"
"The ACA safeguards women by providing insurance options, ensuring preventive services are covered and lowering costs. The law’s benefits for women will have positive results for families."

Bernadette Segura, "Thanks to ACA, More Cancer Patients Have Hope"
"Yes, shockingly it is true. Insurance companies before the ACA were allowed to drop patients when they became severely sick."

Nadia Jones, "Give Me Universal Health Care"
"I knew that Mexico was one of the many countries of the world that offers universal health care to its residents....What I didn’t know was how false all the ugly rumors I had heard about universal health care were. There were no long lines to see the doctor, the waiting room was not full or dirty, and I was able to get my appointment and prescription medicine right away."

Tracy Muñoz, "The Affordable Care Act Allows My Children to Invest in Their Future"
"If it weren’t for ACA, my 24-year-old would have to drop out of school and face poor job prospects in our present economy. Indirectly, the real possibility of having no insurance would impact the choices he makes to support his son, his career path and future earning potential."

Luz Villafana, "Celebrating the Second Anniversary of Health Reform"
"Thanks to health reform, I was confident that the insurance company wouldn’t cancel my benefits or put a cap on what they would pay. Had it not been for that, I would have felt anguish just thinking about how I would be able to afford my treatments or perhaps lose my home."

Douglas Palacios, "Get It Right: It's not Obama-Care or Romney-Care. It's the American-Care"
"For my family, not having to pay those co-payments for preventive care has also had a welcome, side benefit: a little extra money to cover other basic family expenses. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, many other Latino families who find themselves in financial trouble due to the current economic crisis no longer have to contend with the additional stress of having to fork out more money just to try and stay healthy."

Lorena Garcia, "Why the Affordable Care Act is a GOOD Thing"
"Luckily, while we celebrate the anniversary of the passage of PPACA, we are able to highlight not only the benefits, but we also get to remember the conditions we were in that lead President Obama to fight so hard to pass a law like this one."

Jennifer Ngandu, "What's at Stake -- No, Who's at Stake in the Great Supreme Court Case?"
"The outcome of this case is especially important for Latinos because it will dictate future health care access for a population that is increasingly a driving force in the country, but whose health has been put at risk because they are pitifully underserved in our current system."

Dariela Cruz, "More Changes Still to Come to Health Insurance"
"We will be able to “shop” for health insurance that is more affordable and convenient for the whole family and I will be able to get an insurance for myself and go to the doctor for a checkup without any worries. These types of changes take a long time to implement, but I think that they will be worth it as we will all have options whether we work full-time, part-time or independently."

Congressman Luis V. Gutierrez, "Why I Voted for the Affordable Care Act"
"Prior to the signing of critical health care reform legislation two years ago, more than 46 million Americans found themselves uninsured or underinsured. This was an unacceptable situation."

Congressman Raul Grijalva, "Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, Arizonans on Medicare Saved $37 Million"
"A report released earlier this year from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) finds that 65,729 Arizona Medicare beneficiaries saved $36,977,657 on their prescription drugs in 2011 thanks to the Affordable Care Act (ACA). This represents an average savings of $563."

Congresswoman Linda T. Sanchez, "All Women Deserve Contraception Access"
"What is being debated before the Committee has nothing to do with religious liberty. The regulations that the Obama Administration adopted were developed by an objective, non-partisan panel. This hearing has everything to do with House Republicans trying to control the decisions best left to a woman and her doctor."

Senator Robert Menendez, "Defeat of Blunt Amendment A Victory For Women Over Cynical, Dangerous Attempt to Deny Health Care Services"
"The amendment would have put not only vital preventive care services, such as access to contraception, mammograms and prenatal screenings at risk for nearly 630,000 women in New Jersey, but also potentially lifesaving services such as blood transfusions, vaccines and prescription medications."

Lorena Garcia, "Can Latinos Change the Abortion Conversation?"
"Latinos want our state and nation’s conversation to be less judgmental and less stigmatizing, both in our language and our treatment of a woman making the decision about whether or not to end a pregnancy."

School Nutrition

Chef Lorena Garcia, "Alliance for a Healthier Generation: Paying Attention To What We Feed Our Kids"
"Here is the bottom line: we can reverse this epidemic. Parents, schools, students and community members can come together and make a difference."

Nicole Presley, "Riverside School Cafeterias Are Changing For The Best"
"People snickered and told him his plan of healthy eating would not and could not work, but Rodney just kept his goals in sight of making a better lunch meal and changing the perception of school food service. One of the first things he incorporated to entice his students to come and eat in the cafeteria was start daily bar-b-que."

Lily Eskelsen, "The Truth About Healthy Food (and Kids and Schools)"
"It took us years to develop into a culture that sits too much and eats too much of too much of the wrong things. It’s going to take some time to develop healthier habits in our kids. But we’ll start with the school leading the way."

Ericka Sanchez, "Honored to Be Recognized At the White House, Proud to Stand Up for New Nutrition Standards"
"As a mother and food blogger, the statistics relating to childhood obesity were astonishing. Nearly one in three children and teenagers are overweight or obese."

Veronica Gonzalez-Smith, "Packing School Lunches Your Kids Will Love"
"Kids are extremely creative when it comes to creating colorful skewers of fruit. Just set some fruit in front of them and watch what happens."

Nicole Presley, "A Thumbs Up to These Great Federal Food Initiatives!"
"For Latino children it literally is feast or famine. Thirty percent of Latino children are obese and 30 percent are struggling to find their next meal."

Jessica Fuentes, "Healthy School Meals: A Step Forward for Latino Children"
"The USDA’s new guidelines make a significant positive impact in the lives of Latino children. In 2011, almost 32 million children participated in some type of school meal program. According to the Urban Institute, 'Hispanic children represent over one third of all low-income uninsured children who participate in these programs.'"

Monica Olivera Hazelton, "A Buffet of Latin American Recipes"
"Abuelita really did know best when it came to family meal planning!"

Elisa Batista, "When Childhood Obesity Gets In the Way of Fun"
"From experience, I can tell you that for many working class Latino families, the schools are an important place for our kids to learn to eat healthy. It’s not that we parents don’t care about teaching our kids good eating habits, it’s that we are stretched thin."

Nicole Presley, "Kale Salad and the Kids of East Los Angeles!"
"They asked for second and third servings of kale salad! SCHOOL-AGED KIDS EATING KALE!"

Worker Rights

Sonia Ordoñez, "Will Work for a Living Wage at the Hyatt"
"In Boston, the Hyatt fired the entire housekeeping staff and replaced the women with minimum-wage, non-union temp workers. Some of the women had to train their replacements. I know what it’s like to work those jobs, and it is unsafe and you get no respect."

Paul Monge-Rodriguez, "Mi Campeona: CA Domestic Workers Bill of Rights"
"Like many other immigrant women who are beginning their lives in the U.S., my mom found work as a domestic worker. As a single mother, she supported my sister and I by working as a nanny and a housecleaner for affluent families in Marin and Sausalito."

Steve Osuna, "My Mother's Work: Why I Support the CA Domestic Workers Bill of Rights"
"My mother, Guadalupe, was employed as a domestic worker since she migrated from Mexico in 1968. She worked in numerous affluent communities in the greater Los Angeles area such as Los Feliz, Pasadena, Woodland Hill, Hollywood Hills, and North Hollywood."

Paco Fabian, "Warehouse Workers Marching for Their Families"
"What is arguably most disturbing is Walmart’s utter lack of concern for how policies in their contracted warehouses affect not only workers, but also the children and family members who depend on the workers’ meager wages."

Lily Eskelsen, "These Educators Deserve a Movie Deal"
"She thanks her union for supporting them in their struggle during the funding crisis in her district that resulted in 204 teachers and 64 education support professionals being told a few months ago that due to budget cuts by Governor Tom Corbett there just wasn’t enough money to cover their paychecks."

Andrea Cristina Mercado, "Labor Protections Are Long Overdue"
"My grandmother was a domestic worker, my mom hired nannies to help raise my brother, sister, and I, and as a working mom I employ childcare providers to take care of my own young daughters. I support AB 889, the California Domestic Worker Bill of Rights Campaign, because I value this vital, but often disrespected, work."

Lily Eskelsen, "The NEA, Your Kids' School and the Middle Seat"
"So public schools and their teachers and the NEA tend to get a bad reputation, even when the reality is that your kids’ school isn’t the exception – it’s the rule. But your kids’ school isn’t on the news because there was no bad news there."

Unemployment Insurance

Elisanta Batista, "Unemployment Insurance is the LEAST We Can Offer Working Families"
"The reason I say “working” families is because this economy is much more
complicated than “working” and “unemployed.” There are many families like ours,
struggling, even though we both technically have jobs."

Tigger, "Without Unemployment Insurance, My Family Would Have To Choose Which Bills to Pay"
"The truth is unemployment insurance is not enough to cover all of my family’s expenses. Even though my spouse works and I receive two unemployment checks every month, I visit a food pantry monthly to supplement our household income."

Lily Eskelsen, "And Now, About Those Mega-Rich Alleged Job Creators"
"Without customers, there’s no one to buy your product or service. And if customers don’t have jobs and decent pay to go along with those jobs, they can’t buy what you’re selling."

Immigrant Families

Congressman Luis V. Gutierrez, "Ten Reasons Young People Should Come Forward for Deferred Action"
"Almost all of the young people I have talked to are eager to come forward. They fought hard for deportation relief and want to be able to work, drive, go to school, and fight on for broader, permanent immigration reform, including the DREAM Act."

Mary Olivella, "DREAMers: Mothers Look Forward To Your Success With the Deferred Action Process, and We Urge Caution When Applying!"
"While we continue the momentum towards passage of the DREAM Act, mothers across the country are standing in support of the 1.76 million immigrant youth who will be able, starting August 15, 2012, to seek a form of administrative relief from deportation."

Wendy Cervantes, "No Child is 'Illegal'"
"Yet perhaps one of the report’s most troubling findings is that many of the children interviewed understood the term “immigrant” to be something negative and equivalent to “illegal.” As a daughter of Mexican immigrants, I find the growing trend of shame and fear among children in immigrant families very upsetting."

Norma De La Vega, "Immigrant Mothers -- Living With a Heart Divided"
"Little is known about the drama faced by undocumented nannies in this country — mothers who love and care for other people’s children, while their own children are only able to reach them by phone because they are living back in their home country."

Congressman Luis V. Gutierrez, "Pop Quiz: Pick Out the Immigrant"
"In Arizona today, all that stands between you and a legal nightmare is whether a police officer feels there is a 'reasonable suspicion' to inquire about your country of origin. Yet, Arizona politicians will tell you with a straight face that they can apply this law without using racial profiling."

Wendy Cervantes, "What the Supreme Court Ruling on SB 1070 Means For Children and Families"
"On June 25, 2012 the U.S. Supreme Court struck down three of four provisions of SB 1070 based on the grounds that federal law preempts state law....The Court also temporarily upheld Section 2(B), the provision that would allow local law enforcement officers to determine the immigration status of individuals that are stopped, detained, or arrested if there is a “reasonable suspicion” that the individual is unlawfully present."

Elisa Batista, "Racial Profiling of Immigrants Has Consequences For All Communities"
"Racial profiling of immigrants has spiked since certain states have passed laws allowing local police to enforce federal immigration statutes. Some of these laws go as far as making landlords, school principals and church pastors immigrant law enforcers by requiring them to check the immigrant status of all families in their care."

Wendy Cervantes, "What the Youth of Alabama Taught Me"
"We as a country will pay the price for denying our children the supports they deserve to grow into thriving citizens, and extremist anti-immigrant legislators will eventually pay the political price for pushing laws that rob hard-working immigrant families of their dignity and human rights."

Marielena Hincapie, "My Hope: A Fear-Free Alabama"
"Today, on my way to Birmingham, I can’t help but think of Esperanza, her child, and her family. I can’t help but think of my own immigrant family and how my parents would have fared under such a hateful law."

Monica Hernandez, "Uniting Women Leaders in Alabama"
"In 2011, three Deep South states — Georgia, Alabama and South Carolina — passed their own versions of Arizona’s draconian SB 1070. It is not a coincidence that these laws were approved in a region defined by a long legacy of institutionalized racism, clearly still alive and well in 2012."

Jacinta Gonzalez, "Every Day Resistance"
"The same states that have passed anti-immigrant bills, have also created a society and legal code based on slavery, “separate but equal” Jim Crow laws, restricted voting and mass incarceration. But this same region has also given birth to the freedom riders, bus boycotts, sit-ins, and prison strikes; brave acts of resistance that have changed the direction of our history as a nation."

Valeria Fernandez, "Arizona Bill Would Bar Shackling of Mothers Giving Birth"
"Senate Bill 1184, sponsored by Arizona Sen. Linda Gray, a Republican, would prohibit correctional facilities from using restraints on a pregnant inmate in a baby’s final trimester (three months) of gestation or during labor, delivery and postpartum recovery."

Elisa Batista, "Five Myths About California DREAMers"
"We Californians are innovators in so many ways: home to the first personal computer, the nation’s first recycling program and ground zero for the Americans with Disabilities Act. But we also have this nasty history of exploiting and scapegoating minority groups, like immigrants."

Lily Eskelsen, "Frightening Children in Alabama"
"All children, immigrant or not, with or without documentation, all the public’s children have the right to a public education. Children will not be punished with illiteracy for the acts of their parents. That’s the law."

Clean Air

Adrianna Quintero, "A Long Awaited Victory for Children, Families and Our Future"
"Today, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the adoption of historic safeguards against mercury and other toxic air pollution which will help to protect our children from increased risk of brain damage, cerebral palsy and other neuro-developmental problems."

Liz Cerezo, "Why?"
"We have been battling asthma since July of 2010 and I must confess to you all that I. HATE. ASTHMA. I hate it in the sense that it messes with my son’s breathing. His breathing! This is so freaking scary."

Rumbo News, "Hispanics in Massachusetts Burdened by Asthma"
"However, the starkest disparities are found in asthma outcomes. Hispanics are 2 to 3 times more likely to visit the emergency department, be hospitalized, and die due to their asthma compared to Whites."

Arturo Sandoval, "Poll Reveals New Mexico's Latinos Concerned About Health of State's Environment"
"Hispanic voters have serious concerns about a wide range of conservation issues, particularly drought and water scarcity, forest fires, pollution of air and water, and the loss of natural wildlife habitats."

Fair Pay

Janet Murguia, "The True Value of Work: A Blog Carnival Honoring Latinas and Equal Pay Day"
"Low wages, unpaid wages, no health insurance, dangerous working conditions, unpredictable schedules, sexual harassment, discrimination — these are daily realities that threaten the economic security of millions of women, their families, and the communities in which they live."

Hector E. Sanchez, "Wage Theft, Sexual Harassment and Workplace Violence: The Troubling Reality of Many Latina and Immigrant Workers"
"Latinas fill traditionally underpaid occupations in industries where wages fall below poverty thresholds for families. In these positions they are more likely to be robbed of their legally mandated wages, an issue that aggravates their already substandard income as they experience the widest wage gap among women."

Nicolas Sanchez, "California Restaurant Owner: Increase in Tipped Minimum Wage Good for Economy, Country"
"Paying a living wage helps my business because the workers feel respected and don’t quit on me, leaving me scrambling for new workers. In paying a living wage, I am saving money in hiring and training new employees."

Housing Rights

Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity John Trasviña, "With Your Help, We Will Put A Stop To Maternity Leave Discrimination"
"HUD’s Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity has successfully resolved a number of important maternity leave cases in recent years. MomsRising has been instrumental in getting word out to parents around the country who have faced different treatment when seeking a loan and often did not realize the treatment they received could be a violation of the Fair Housing Act."

Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity John Trasviña, "Waterstone Mortgage Agrees To Pay $27,000 To Settle Maternity Discrimination Claims Over Round Rock, Texas Home"
"Refusing to approve a mortgage loan or provide refinancing because a woman is pregnant or on family leave violates the Fair Housing Act’s prohibition against sex and familial status discrimination."

Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity John Trasviña, "HUD Charges MA Apartment Building Owner With Discriminating Against Families With Children"
"HUD guidance on the investigation of Fair Housing Act and in its lead regulations makes clear that while property owners may tell families about housing units that have not been remediated for lead paint, the presence of lead-based paint cannot be used as a reason to refuse to rent."

Paid Family Leave

Elisa Batista, "First Paid Family Leave Law in the Nation Turns 10"
"Not only has the law reduced staff turnover and increased the productivity of California workers who have taken paid family leave, it has also boosted the state economy by helping keep families afloat and keeping them off public assistance."

Maria Elena Durazo, "On the 10th Anniversary of Paid Family Leave, It's Time More Workers Know About It"
"Unpaid leave hurts a family’s income and economic security – many of our working families, especially in this economy, live at the margin and can’t afford to take leave without pay."

Breastfeeding Rights

Diana Limongi-Gabriele, "What We Really Need to Support Breastfeeding Moms in NYC"
"Instead of offering women gift bags with formula, why isn’t there a gift bag with goodies that help breastfeeding mothers, such as: Lansinoh lanolin cream, vitamins, fenugreek, breastfeeding pillow, gel soothies for pain and discomfort, a reduced price certificate for a breast pump and breastfeeding book."

Jessica Gonzalez-Rojas, "Nursing Sagas of a Working Mama"
"Both my partner and I have careers that require a high percentage of travel, leading to a decision to either pump or breastfeed on the road. Since I started my new role in mid-October, fresh off the return from parental leave, I have traveled 21 times to seven cities ranging from Washington, DC to Oakland, California."

Saray Hill, "Healthcare Reform and Breastfeeding"
"The cost of having a small room with a table, chair, an electrical outlet, and a door to be locked while the mother is in there pales in comparison to the benefits for the family, company and society in general when a baby is getting nutrition from her mother."

Paid Sick Days

Elisa Batista, "Lack of Paid Sick Days for Immigrant Caregivers Risky For Workers, U.S. Economy"
"In 145 countries, businesses provide workers with paid sick days. But the United States isn’t one of them. Nearly 40 percent of U.S. workers lack access to paid leave to care for themselves or a sick family member."

Elisa Batista, "Lack of Paid Sick Days Has Claimed Latino Lives"
"Our lack of a federal sick days policy is not only devastating to families, but our economy as well. Research has shown that people who go to work sick don’t get as much done as they think they do and they run the risk of inadvertently infecting their co-workers."

Elisa Batista, "Restaurant Lobby Kills Sick Days Bill in Denver"
"This is as gross to me as the thought of an expired hamburger that has fallen on the floor and been sneezed on prior to sale. The restaurant lobby spent $837,000 to defeat a sick days bill in Denver."

Thanks to your work and generous support, key pieces of pro-family legislation made headlines in Spanish and in English. ¡Gracias!
"Op-Ed: A Surprising Issue Will Change the Way Moms Vote in 2012", MomsRising Chief Strategy Officer Mary Olivella for ABC News / Univision
"Op-Ed: Latina Mothers Hope Supreme Court Upholds Health Care Law", MomsRising Campaign Specialist Elisa Batista for FOX News Latino
"Latina Bloggers Take Over The White House", MomsRising Campaign Specialist Elisa Batista was mentioned in Latina

The views and opinions expressed in this post are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of strongly encourages our readers to post comments in response to blog posts. We value diversity of opinions and perspectives. Our goals for this space are to be educational, thought-provoking, and respectful. So we actively moderate comments and we reserve the right to edit or remove comments that undermine these goals. Thanks!