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Through advocacy and analysis, the Latino Policy Forum builds a foundation for equity, justice, and economic prosperity for the Latino community. By catalyzing policy change, the Forum works to improve education outcomes, advocate for affordable housing, promote just immigration policies, and strengthen community leadership.

Latinos in Illinois do not have equity. Investments in our community have always been woefully inadequate. After Whites, Latinos are the largest racial group in the state, and from 2010 to 2020, our numbers in Illinois grew from 16% to 18% of the total population, thus widening the gap between present resources and the resources required, even further. And as essential drivers of economic growth and stability in our state, our... Continue Reading

Posted In: Education, Infant & Toddler Services , Preschool, K-3, Families & Communities, Housing, Homelessness, Immigration, Immigration Reform & Policy, State Investment, Access & Resources, Educators, Representation in Government, Immigrant Integration

Dear Friends and Community, 

Happy New Year! Earlier this month, we at the Forum had our annual staff retreat and our fantastic facilitators, Sherida Morrison and Patty Meggs-Harbin, reminded us how important it was to take moments to reflect on what we have accomplished and celebrate, so I didn’t want to let this first month of 2024 pass without doing that and also share some of the exciting things we’re planning this year.

In 2023, the Forum produced four important reports that help us better understand the long-standing structural inequities confronting our community. We knew that Latino population growth was being driven by people outside of Chicago, so together with the... Continue Reading

It is essential to provide nuanced and culturally sensitive explanations and analyses of housing and living arrangements to ensure that a descriptive narrative accurately portrays how people live. This is especially important in understanding the Latino community's multigenerational and multifamily living arrangements.

In 2022, nearly one-third, or 32%, of Latino households in the nation, were multigenerational. For Latinos, choosing to live in multigenerational or multifamily situations is often mutually beneficial to all. These arrangements make childcare and elder care more manageable, for example. They also reflect the profound significance of familial ties, the preservation of cultural heritage, and respect for elders. In this context, multigenerational living is a cultural practice, a way of life, and a manifestation of... Continue Reading

Posted In: Families & Communities, Housing, Affordable Housing, Homelessness

Friends and Neighbors, 

I hope you are enjoying the plentiful colors of the season. Our state is beautiful year-round, but it shows off in autumn!

In thinking of this season of change, I reflected on a change of my own when recently celebrating a milestone birthday, not just another number, but I feel it is a symbol of the wisdom and experiences I have gathered over the years. I am claiming my transition to being an elder, a stage of life in which I will seek to be more deliberate in sharing my lessons learned and providing guidance in the quest for justice and equity.

My heart is filled with gratitude... Continue Reading

In ongoing discussions of the housing affordability crisis, the cost of rent or mortgage payments is often the focus of attention. Utility expenses are frequently left out of the housing affordability equation. However, utility costs, (e.g., gas, water, electricity, and the internet), are a critical aspect of housing affordability for renters and homeowners that needs to be addressed. 

Attention to utility costs in the context of affordable housing is critical because these costs disproportionately have a negative impact on low-income and minority renters and homeowners. 

Internet as an Essential Utility

Internet costs are often overlooked as a necessary household expense, but it is crucial to recognize these costs are an essential utility in today’s interconnected... Continue Reading