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NCLR in Action is a monthly communication from the National Council of La Raza (NCLR), the largest national Hispanic civil rights and advocacy organization in the United States, which provides information on issues of importance to Latinos. Each email contains one action item, followed by updates on what's happening with other issue areas. Take a look below and make your voice heard on Capitol Hill!

Elizabeth Warren Fights for Consumers, Let’s Fight for Her

Last year, you fought to ensure that our leaders created the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)—the first entity solely devoted to fighting financial crime on behalf of American families.  In its developmental stages, the CFPB has already stood up on issues that are important to Latino consumers, such as new ways to make lending terms clearer and commonsense remittance disclosures that plainly detail fees.  

Critical among the strong points of this unique bureau is that it will be led by one director.  This is essential.  As we know, spreading authority over a committee often bloats bureaucracy and weakens performance.  

Professor Elizabeth Warren, an avid consumer advocate, is the frontrunner for being appointed as Director of the CFPB.  Warren has a long history of fighting for consumers.  She has made frequent site visits throughout the nation—including to NCLR’s Affiliates—to assess the fallout of the economic crisis.  She knows how our families struggle.  However, petty politics is rearing its ugly head once again, and some members of Congress are trying to weaken the CFPB’s influence by denying Warren’s appointment and maintaining the status quo.  

Ask your senator to support Elizabeth Warren so American families can finally pull their heads above water! 

Make sure your senator knows that you expect strong leadership in these tough times and you will not stand for petty politics that accomplishes nothing.

This month in...

Economy and Employment
Test your knowledge with our new Social Security
VideoQuiz!  Geared toward Latino youth, the VideoQuiz conveys basic information about Social Security.  After you take the VideoQuiz, tell us what you think about Social Security.  The young person who submits the best video response will win a flight to Washington, DC and a free registration to our annual Líderes Summit, the premier Latino youth leadership conference!

We’ve been keeping advocates updated on the new developments in the implementation of health care reform through a series of national calls, the latest of which centered on
protecting MedicaidLearn what you can do here.  Future calls will focus on civil rights protection and health equity.  Want to get in on future calls?  Sign up to join the health and nutrition advocates list and stay in the loop.

Recent news reports indicate that Representative Lamar Smith (R–TX), Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, wants to introduce a bill that would require employers to electronically check the legal status of their workers using the E-Verify program.  The E-Verify program would negatively impact
Latino workers and encumber business growth by placing additional regulatory burdens and costs on businesses.  Do you know of U.S. citizens and work-authorized immigrants who have lost their job or experienced problems getting a job because of E-Verify?  Do you know of employers who have been delayed or prevented from hiring workers due to inaccurate results from E-Verify?  Please send examples to policy@nclr.org.  

Juvenile Justice
Last month, NCLR continued its series of webinars on juvenile justice reform issues with a presentation on immigrant youth in the juvenile justice system.  The webinar addressed immigration consequences for noncitizen youth in the system and offered resources for organizations working with these youth.  If you missed the webinar, you can download the
webinar presentation and a recent NCLR fact sheet
on juvenile justice.  Next month’s webinar will focus on the experiences and best practices of the Philadelphia-based prevention and mentoring program, Men In Motion In the Community (MIMIC).

NCLR has been tracking the “Setting New Priorities in Education Spending Act,” a bill introduced in the House that threatened to eliminate 43 education programs.  The measure, which was approved by a party-line vote of 23–16 on May 25, eliminates the William F. Goodling Even Start program, a critical early learning program that serves Hispanic children.  Fortunately, an amendment was introduced by Congressman Todd Platts (R–PA) that restored Parent Information Resource Centers, which provide vital tools to help parents engage in their children’s education.  Stay tuned for further action on this issue!

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