2009-2010 LULAC NATIONAL POLICY PLATFORM
LULAC supports equal opportunity for employment, promotion and contracting, and opposes discrimination of any form in the workplace and supports affirmative action as a set of positive steps that employers use to promote equal employment opportunities. LULAC remains committed to fighting efforts to overturn decisions that have upset affirmative action programs across the country.
CENSUS AND DATA COLLECTION
Recognizing that the Census Bureau has a very poor record of hiring Hispanics in the federal government with Latinos comprising less than 6 percent of the Bureau’s permanent work force, LULAC urges that the Census Bureau’s EEO Office establish a system to assess its failure to identify the persistent under representation of Hispanics in the Bureau’s work and develop effective strategies for addressing this problem in order to increase future problem-solving capacities. LULAC strongly supports a standardized review of the Census’ managers and supervisors based in part, on their performance with respect to EEO issues like the hiring a diversified employment force, including Hispanics.
LULAC supports Census to provide the Hispanic Census Committee with timely and transparent data on the recruitment and hiring of Hispanics for each of the 12 regional offices and each state that it represents, by grade level, and job title, on a monthly basis.
LULAC takes a strong position in urging the Census Bureau to include and emphasize in its presentations, community activities, and written promotional materials, its assurance to LULAC, and the Hispanic Community that the information gathered is completely confidential, Under Title 13, the Census Bureau collects data solely to produce statistics.
CHILD LABOR AND THE EXPLOITATION OF MINORS
LULAC strongly supports ending child labor through education and by supporting the International Labor Organization’s (ILO) international programs to eliminate child labor worldwide. LULAC opposes the exploitation of children working anywhere for low wages and under hazardous conditions. LULAC deplores any and all exploitation of minors, whether psychological, physical, political, or sexual.
CITIZENSHIP AND VOTING
LULAC promotes active participation of all eligible Latinos in the democratic process by registering to vote and voting, and encourages all legislative, judicial and educational efforts to promote voter participation and advocacy. LULAC encourages all eligible immigrants to become US citizens and demands that the Citizenship and Immigration Services expedite the processing of citizenship applications pending in a backlog for up to two years or more. LULAC aims to assure that voters’ rights are safeguarded on election-day by preventing potential voting rights violations, such as intimidation at the polls, unworkable voting equipment, and other civil rights violations.
CRIMINAL JUSTICE REFORM
LULAC advocates reform of the criminal justice system to reduce the disproportionate number of Latinos who are incarcerated. LULAC supports reform of the court system to ensure fair sentencing guidelines that do not discriminate among race or socio-economic backgrounds. LULAC opposes the incarceration of youth in adult prisons and supports preventive education and social programs to reduce incarceration and recidivism. LULAC supports the repeal of legislation harmful to Latinos to redress disparate treatment of minorities, such as the elimination of the death penalty. LULAC also supports ensuring that statistical data of inmates in the state and federal prison systems is gathered for Hispanics/Latinos, of any race.
DISCRIMINATION AND RACIAL PROFILING
LULAC denounces any form of discrimination on the basis of national origin, race, religion, sexual orientation, age or disability. LULAC strongly condemns racial profiling, and supports a strong statutory definition of racial profiling along with the institution of data collections systems by law enforcement. LULAC is concerned with the growth of hate groups and encourages Congress to strongly monitor agencies and their enforcement of hate-crime laws. LULAC opposes any effort to amend the US Constitution in any manner that reduces protection of any individual’s rights on the basis of national origin, race, religion, sexual orientation, age or disability.
LULAC supports legislation to grant licenses to immigrants under any status. LULAC supports innovative provisions for the issuance of a license such as passing a criminal background check, endorsement by a citizen, or requiring a pledge by immigrants to apply for legal residency.
LULAC urges companies and government agencies to embrace diversity in all aspects of business, whether employment, promotion, or contracting, as well as to support representation of Hispanics at all levels, from day-to-day management and governance to the boardroom. LULAC encourages the expansion of programs and policies that provide funds to stimulate business, job growth and training, and opportunities for venture capital.
LULAC believes that education is the basis for lifelong success, and strongly opposes any measure that denies education as a fundamental right, including that of immigrant children. School curricula and textbooks should reflect culturally based teaching methods grounded in research. LULAC supports legislation targeted at decreasing the Hispanic dropout rate and urges Congress to implement targeted programs to encourage Hispanic students to remain in school. Federal funding for LULAC National Education Service Centers (LNESC) should be continued so as to address the specific needs of our community, as well as to expand into geographic areas not currently served. Federal funding for Head Start, Migrants and Seasonal Head Start, Gear Up, TRIO, Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), HEP-CAMP, Title I and Title III programs should be increased and access should be expanded to ensure high participation of Latino children. Funding for Title I and Title VII programs should also be increased to address adult basic educational programs and bilingual education.
LULAC strongly opposes vouchers. All Latinos should have access to safe, quality and desegregated public education. Public schools should be improved and rehabilitated, and be provided with adequate funding to do so. LULAC supports full-funding of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. LULAC strongly supports the passage of the DREAM Act. LULAC urges all states to pass laws that allow undocumented immigrant children who have completed high school, are of good moral character, and reside in the state to be admitted to colleges and universities as residents and eligible for in-state tuition. LULAC also urges the federal government to grant these students citizenship after they graduate from college or university. LULAC supports an increase in funding for Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs) of higher education. LULAC supports an increase in the number of Latino educators at all levels of education, administrators and school board members, as well as teacher training and development programs to encourage Latinos to become teachers.
We support dramatically increasing federal funds spent on the development of clean, renewable, environmentally friendly energy sources. LULAC opposes drilling for oil on federal lands, especially in those areas deemed necessary to the ecological well-being and quality of life of its inhabitants and neighbors.
As a means to promote energy security, LULAC supports and advocates for the expansion of efforts to curb abuses to the environment through the “green jobs,” recycling, and rooftop & community gardens.
LULAC strongly opposes all legislation that designates English as the official language of the United States or of any individual state. LULAC supports bilingual education to ensure English proficiency while encouraging students to retain proficiency in their native language. English language acquisition is imperative, but bilingualism and multilingualism are assets to be valued and preserved. LULAC supports increasing programs and funding for ESL for adult students.
LULAC opposes the practice of locating environmentally damaging or dangerous sites in Hispanic and other disadvantaged communities, and opposes the disposal of nuclear, chemical waste or other toxic waste in or near Hispanic communities. LULAC encourages the clean up of “brownfields” (contaminated sites) in Hispanic neighborhoods. LULAC supports the Clean Air Act to reduce emissions that are harmful to Latinos of all ages and opposes any effort to loosen its regulations placed on the coal-burning power plants in the United States.
FARMWORKERS, MIGRANT AND SEASONAL WORKERS
LULAC urges Congress to pass legislation that protects farm workers from employer abuse, while guaranteeing them safe working conditions, housing, and access to schooling and training, especially as relates to any new guest worker programs that may be considered for passage by Congress, which LULAC opposes.
LULAC opposes the expansion of agricultural guest worker programs that do not provide adequate labor rights protections, health benefits and housing. LULAC supports a national holiday honoring Cesar Chavez and commemorating the contributions of farm workers to the United States. School curriculum should include a historical perspective of the farm worker struggle and community service in his honor. LULAC supports the continuation and expansion of the National Farmworkers Job Program.
LULAC urges a strengthening of partnerships with Latin America. We urge the US government to include Latin American nations as partners for the war on terrorism and the creation of multilateral agreements on such important cross-border issues as health, labor, education, immigration and sustainable economic development. Although LULAC supports trade and economic integration with Latin America, it is imperative that trade agreements should be equitable and balanced. LULAC supports efforts to renegotiate trade agreements to raise the standards of living for labor and protect our environmental standards so as to reduce displacement of workers and consequent mass migration. LULAC supports efforts to grow sustainable economic development programs in Latin America and the Caribbean, along with social development programs.
LULAC urges Congress to pass laws that provide stronger sentencing and more aggressive prosecution for hate crimes. The federal government’s role should be expanded in the prosecution of hate crimes by being allowed to assist state and local efforts to prosecute a broader scope of hate crimes.
Universal health care is a priority for Latinos it should include affordable and accessible primary, preventive, and emergency room health care that is culturally competent. Latino mothers should have access to pre-natal care and children must have access to immunization, prescription medications, as well as substance abuse education. LULAC urges pharmaceutical companies and medical research facilities to increase the inclusion of Latinos in their clinical trials.
LULAC urges greater awareness among health care providers of the disparities in the health care system and the elimination of bias and stereotyping of Latino patients. LULAC also advocates patient education programs to increase patients’ knowledge about diseases disproportionately affecting Latinos, such as diabetes, Alzheimer’s and HIV/AIDS, and how to best find health care and participate in the treatment process. LULAC advocates growing awareness about proactive health care through programs impacting smoking and how to quit.
LULAC also urges an expansion of insurance coverage for children in poverty, as well as increased funding for programs to promote self-esteem and prevent teen pregnancy. Because of the disproportionate number of Hispanics who are uninsured and under-insured, LULAC strongly urges the creation of a universal health care coverage plan that insures all people in an equitable manner. LULAC also encourages Congress to take into account different trends and gaps in medical care expenses, such as prescription drug coverage, and pass legislation to improve access to care. LULAC supports the expansion of state and federal funding for mental health and mental disabilities programs. LULAC supports parity for Medicare Part D, for residents of Puerto Rico.
LULAC calls for a Public Health Plan that would include parity for mental health, employer mandates and coverage of all legal immigrant residents.
LULAC promotes public service and strongly supports Executive Order 13171 to increase the representation of Hispanics in federal employment. We urge the administration to work closely with Hispanic members of Congress to develop strategies that will increase the representation of Latinos in the federal government. LULAC urges the US Senate to provide a level playing field for Hispanic judicial nominees to ensure that Hispanic representation in the judicial system increases proportionally to the numbers of Latinos in the general population.
LULAC supports an increase in the nation’s stock of affordable housing. It particularly champions an increase in resources to build, rehabilitate and preserve housing for low and extremely low income households in both the rental and purchase markets. In addition, LULAC supports the development of more housing for the elderly; the creation of additional emergency shelter to permanent housing for victims of domestic violence; the development of integrated permanent supportive housing for people with disabilities and an increase in funding for programs and services to end homelessness. LULAC also supports investments in green affordable housing.
LULAC supports increasing services and affordable housing units for America’s rural poor. It strongly encourages the development of housing options for migrant farm workers and their families.
LULAC supports the improvement in the quality of life of residents of the Southwest border colonias, including access to such basic amenities as electricity and potable water. LULAC opposes all forms of housing discrimination and calls for stronger enforcement of fair housing laws and the elimination of predatory lending practices. LULAC seeks higher funding to increase the capacity of Hispanic organizations to conduct fair housing education and enforcement activities.
LULAC supports foreclosure intervention programs and efforts to help stop foreclosures. LULAC calls for the creation of programs to help tenants of foreclosed rental properties remain in their homes.
LULAC opposes any legislation that threatens the rights of immigrants, criminalizes them or those who provide them assistance, and harms Latino communities. Legal residents and naturalized citizens should have the same benefits due native-born citizens. LULAC opposes the militarization of the border and vigilante attacks on immigrants, as well as the mistreatment of immigrants in the United States regardless of their status. LULAC supports comprehensive immigration reform that provides an avenue for undocumented workers to legalize their status and expands the number of legal immigrants allowed into the U.S. to meet our needs. LULAC opposes any efforts to construct a border wall.
LULAC will continue strong opposition to the harsh and inhumane treatment of documented & undocumented persons in private prisons, detention centers, and makeshift holding centers. In addition, LULAC strongly opposes the holding of documented & undocumented juveniles in any facilities that separate them from their parents and/or caretakers.
LULAC supports strong family reunification standards and fair and balanced immigration processes to take into account future flows of workers. Though LULAC does not support guest-worker programs, should they pass, LULAC endorses full worker protections including the right to organize and to apply for citizenship on their own right without depending on their employer. LULAC opposes the use of local law enforcement in immigration enforcement.
All Latinos should have access to safe, quality and desegregated public education. Public schools should be improved and rehabilitated, and be provided with adequate funding to do so. LULAC supports full-funding of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. LULAC strongly supports the passage of the DREAM Act. LULAC urges all states to pass laws that allow undocumented immigrant children who have completed high school, are of good moral character, and reside in the state to be admitted to colleges and universities as residents and eligible for in-state tuition. LULAC also urges the federal government to grant these students citizenship after they graduate from college or university.
Taser Guns were classified by the United Nations Committee Against Torture (CAT) on Friday November 23 rd 2007 as a "Form of Torture" and "Can even provoke Death." The Use of these weapons provokes extreme pain that can go as far as causing death. Reliable studies and recent facts occurring in practice have revealed “the consequences to the physical and mental state of the persons targeted are of a nature to violate" the provisions of the United Nations Convention against Torture. Over 300 people have been killed by police Taser since their use began in the year 2000; most of the victims of Taser torture and death are Hispanics and people of color. National LULAC opposes Taser use by Police Officers and Law Enforcement personnel and calls for Tasers to be removed from use by Police Officers and Law Enforcement agencies all together.
LULAC strongly advocates for the increase of Hispanic-oriented programming in all facets of the media and demands that more high-level decision-making positions be made available to Hispanics at major media companies and networks. Programs should provide a positive and accurate portrayal of the cultural breadth of Latinos and their contributions to the United States.
LULAC encourages the FCC to require broadcasters to provide better Latino programming and representation in prime-time slots throughout the day as part of their public service obligations. LULAC supports Children’s programming that acknowledges that the Latino population and cultures are an integral part of US society.
LULAC reaffirms its strong support of legislation that provides a congressionally recognized framework for the four million US Citizens living in Puerto Rico to freely express their wishes regarding their options for full self government.
LULAC strongly advocates for programs and legislation to protect the quality of life of Latino seniors, for fair cost housing, transportation for those with special needs, in homecare, employment opportunities, and the reduction of elderly abuse and fraud. LULAC seeks a reduction of costly prescription drugs and a streamlining of Medicare prescription drug coverage.
LULAC opposes the privatization of Social Security and any tax cut plan that would compromise its future stability. Individual accounts and tax cuts should not be substituted for Social Security’s currently defined system. LULAC supports stronger benefits for lower income groups, women, and the disabled.
LULAC strongly supports legislation that would guarantee pay equity for women, strong penalties for sexual harassment, and support for women who file complaints against their employers. LULAC supports the expansion of leadership development programs for women of all ages and encourages more Latinas to run for public office. LULAC strongly supports programs to protect women and their children from domestic violence and sexual abuse, and strong penalties for abusers that include but are not limited to community service, appropriate time in jail and mandatory anger management training. LULAC is concerned with the ongoing findings that Hispanic women fare worse in health and health care than other populations of women and strongly encourages better access to health benefits, literacy, and improved doctor-patient relationships.
LULAC strongly supports the rights of working men and women to organize under the law and form labor unions dedicated to continuing the struggle for equality, social and economic justice. LULAC supports extending the benefits of a bountiful society to all workers, without regard to age, sex, race, nationality or creed, and to improve the working and living conditions of all workers worldwide.