WASHINGTON — September 15 marks the start of Hispanic Heritage Month. It’s a time to celebrate the culture, history, contributions, and achievements of Hispanic and Latinx-Americans. Hispanic Heritage Month is an important occasion to recognize the significant impact that this population has had on the history of this country, highlight the injustices they still face, and fight for equitable solutions to support them.
Latinx women have been critical in pushing the feminist movement forward. Dolores Huerta, Felisa Rincón de Gautier, Sylvia Rivera, and Ana Mendieta are just a few iconic Hispanic leaders who have fought to make the world better for all women. And for the next four weeks, we will honor their legacies along with many more. Hispanic and Latinx women’s representation within our legislative ranks has also increased with 75 candidates running for both federal and local government positions in 2020. This number is projected to increase in the upcoming 2024 election as more Hispanic and Latinx women push for an intersectional feminist agenda. They are fighting to end racism, establish universal healthcare, close the wage gap, and achieve overall equality for all women.
As we continue to fight, we also must remember that Hispanic and Latinx women are disproportionately affected by the gender wage gap, unemployment, voting restrictions, failing maternal health care, disparate treatment by law enforcement, and systemic racism and xenophobia. According to the Department of Labor, Latinx women make up the largest share of workers in the country and account for 16 percent of the female workforce. However, they only make just 57 cents to every dollar a non-Hispanic white man makes – the largest wage gap of any major racial or ethnic group.
NOW will continue to advocate for this community to eliminate the barriers that unfairly hold them back. Fighting for Hispanic women is fighting for all women.
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The National Organization for Women (NOW) is the nation’s leading membership-based advocacy group dedicated to defending women’s rights, advancing equality and combating injustice in all aspects of social, political and economic life. Through educating, mobilizing, and convening a vast network of grassroots activists across the country, NOW advocates for national, state and local policies that promote an anti-racist and intersectional feminist agenda. Since its founding in 1966, NOW has been on the frontlines of nearly every major advancement for women’s rights and continues to champion progressive values today. More about NOW’s efforts and resources is available at NOW.org