Celebrating National Hispanic Heritage Month
September 15th is the start of National Hispanic Heritage Month. It’s a celebration of the achievements and contributions of the Hispanic community, and an opportunity to highlight the leaders who are lifting up those in the community. In Arizona, 31.5% of our population is Hispanic and they play a pivotal role in the growth we have seen across the state.
Some interesting facts about the Hispanic community shared as part of the Unidos Count on Us campaign include:
- Latino-owned businesses employ more than a million people in Arizona
- Latinos spend over $63B a year at businesses right here in Arizona
- Almost half of Arizona’s K–12 students are Latino, so they are a big part of the next generation of Arizona workers, too
We brought together Maria Harper-Marinick, Senior Fellow at Aspen Institute College Excellence Program, Chris Camacho, President and CEO at Greater Phoenix Economic Council, and Stephanie Parra, Executive Director at ALL In Education, to discuss some important questions:
- How does educational attainment impact the growth of the Hispanic community?
- What is the Hispanic community’s role in Arizona’s economic development?
- How can Arizonans more broadly come together to support the Hispanic community?
One of the most important takeaways from our conversation was that in order for us to lift up the Hispanic community, it’s important that we don’t look at education, economic development, housing or any other issue in a silo. We as leaders need to advocate for the community as a whole if we want to create real impact.