Horizon, Host: Ted Simons

October 18, 2012


Host: José Cárdenas

National Latino Children's Summit


  • The National Latino Children's Institute is collaborating with eLatina Voices to gather national, state, and local Latino children's organizations and advocates to focus on the contributions, challenges, and issues facing Latino youth in a National Latino Children's Summit. Olga Aros, Summit Chair and founder of eLatina Voices and Argie Gomez, Summit Co-chair and Chicanos Por La Causa Chief Financial Officer talk about the summit.
Category: Vote 2010   |   Keywords: national, latino, children, child, summit, ,

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José Cárdenas: National and community leaders along with children's organizations and advocates will meet tomorrow and Saturday to talk about challenges facing young Latinos today as well as the contributions they can make to society. Here to talk about the national young latinos children summit is Olga Aros, summit chair and founder of Latino voices and Argie Gomez, summit co-chair and chief financial office of national Latino children's summit. I know they played a major role in pulling this together, but give us a quick overview of the summit itself.

Olga Aros: The summit is a day and a half. It starts on Friday with the training of 60 young leaders on civic engagement advocacy and leadership and a full day on Saturday that will address six major issues that are part of the national Latino children's institute agenda for the betterment of the lives of Latino children.

José Cárdenas: As I understand it the summit itself is sold out. The only portion now open to the public is the film by Paul Espinoza.

Olga Aros: There is a reception on Friday evening from 5:30 to 8:00 held at the Virginia Piper auditorium at the University of Arizona's medical and science building. A docudrama film of the lemon grove incident produced by Paul Espinoza.

José Cárdenas: We have that on the screen now so people can get more information. Olga, a couple of years ago with SB 1070 the Latino community or certain elements were urging people to boycott the state. Stay away. This summit has come to Arizona precisely because it views Arizona as ground zero on these kinds of issues. Am I right?

Olga Aros: You're absolutely correct. They decided to come into Arizona because they saw that some of the legislation being proposed would seriously harm Latino children in Arizona but also it became -- it would have a domino effect throughout the nation. That type of legislation they felt they needed to address.

José Cárdenas: Argie, what do you hope to come out of the summit?

Argie Gomez: I want to talk just a minute about the attack on the 14th amendment. That's been very important to us. That's something we talk about at the institute and why children need to be safe. I think --

José Cárdenas: You're referring to the birth rights, citizenship issue saying even if you're born here if your parents didn't come here legally then you're not a citizen.

Argie Gomez: Correct. Which is opposite of what the constitution says. So out comes of the summit are education of our community, education of our youth leaders, training on advocacy and really being able to circle our rope here to really get our community well informed, to be good advocates, know that they have a voice, that they are empowered. Then the educational piece. Creating and developing 60 youth leaders that will be able to pick up the phone, go see a legislator, understand what that advocacy process is about. I think for the future of Arizona it is incredibly powerful. That's a big outcome for us.

José Cárdenas: Olga, how do you intend to get there? You'll start Friday, end on Saturday. How do you get from wherever you start to where Argie says she wants to ends.

Olga Aros: Well open with a plannery session that includes some of the largest latino serving organizations throughout the nation. That includes maldef. It includes the U.S. Hispanic leadership institute. It includes demographics and ethnic facts about new things related to the Latino consumer and the Latino market. It will also finish up talking about culture and why culture is important in education and why history is important to the learning of young people and young children.

José Cárdenas: Argie, after the summit, assuming you accomplish these goals, what happens next?

Argie Gomez: Well, my guess is, my belief, that we will come away with an agenda. There will be a call to action as part of the last piece of the summit on Saturday. We'll have leaders there. Olga will be there. The CEO for Chicanos por la cause will be there. That action is specific not only to Arizona but to the nation. Like child safety, child sex crimes, immigration, education of our Latino children is important. Those calls to action will be very specific and from there we hope public policy can be impacted, influenced and ultimately legislation that is good and fair toward Latino community and particularly Latino children.

José Cárdenas: Olga, we have only a few seconds left. E-Latina voices. You were on the show last time to talk about it.

Olga Aros: We have grown. Last time we were on you show we were around 600 members. We're now up to 800 and growing every day. We have some very active women that have taken on the issue of child sex crimes and are prepared to take position related to child sex crimes and the things that have happened in that arena, the role that law enforcement plays in the lives of children.

José Cárdenas: on that note we ends the interview. Thank you for joining us. That is our show for this Thursday evening. From all of us here at Horizonte, I'm Jose Cardenas. Have a good night.





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