What is good for Latinos is good for all Californians.
That is the thinking of the California Latino Legislative Caucus, which has outlined its 2017 policy priorities and priority legislation.
“The needs, desires and priorities of Latinos mirror those of all Californians,” said state Sen. Ben Hueso, D-San Diego. “They want excellent schools, clean air and water, safe streets, quality health care, and good-paying jobs.
“Plain and simple, they want what everyone else wants -- an equal opportunity to succeed and realize the American Dream.”
The caucus has identified 20 bills that include education, immigration, health care, housing, economic development, energy, civic engagement and water issues. Five of the bills are in the state Senate, with the balance in the Assembly.
“Our legislative priorities reinforce our belief that helping Latinos in California will undoubtedly end up helping all Californians,” said Assemblymember Lorena González Fletcher, caucus vice chair.
“The Latino Caucus is committed to shaping our state’s public policy agenda for the betterment of everyone in our communities across the state.
The education-related bills will:
▪ Expand public education spending.
▪ Address the achievement gap among students.
▪ Promote funding for the Cal Fund.
▪ Remove obstacles that limit college access for students of color.
▪ Increase student and faculty diversity in higher education.
Our legislative priorities reinforce our belief that helping Latinos in California will undoubtedly end up helping all Californians.
Assemblymember Lorena González Fletcher, Latino Legislative Caucus vice chair
The immigration-related bills will provide legal help for victims of unlawful detainment and warrantless searches/seizures; expand naturalization services; and, promote federal comprehensive immigration reform.
Economic-related legislation promotes workforce diversity; help revitalize blighted communities; increase investment in job-training programs, including those for the formally incarcerated; and enhance opportunities for woman- and minority-owned businesses.
On housing, the caucus supports increasing affordable housing, including for farmworkers.
On civic engagement, the caucus wants to strengthen the California Voting Rights Act, and, encourage 2.5 million legal residents to become U.S. citizens.
On water, the caucus is pushing for safe and affordable drinking water, and, improved water supply and water resources.
On energy, the caucus wants to diversity the location and mix of resources procured by the state, balance clean energy needs with business and job growth opportunities, broaden support for energy initiatives, and, promote Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund investments in low-income and disadvantaged communities.
“Our state cannot continue to grow and maintain its economic prominence unless we educate, employ and keep healthy the fastest-growing sector of our workforce,” said Hueso.