Latino millennials represent a significant block of eligible voters across the nation – and in California, 44.2% of Latino eligible voters are between the ages of 18-35. Today is the last day to register to vote in the California primary elections on June 7th. We know there is power in numbers and this June young Latinos have a chance to make their voices heard.
What inspires you to work for change? Your family, the issues you care about, the people in your community…making your voice heard at the polls is one more way to fight for the future we want. Ana, Rigoberto, and Adriel, three young Latino advocates from California share their reasons for registering to vote in the upcoming election.
Ana Cid is a 24-year-old Latina who works for an immigrant advocacy organization. She was born and raised in Los Angeles to a mixed-status family—her two parents are undocumented and she and her siblings are U.S. born citizens. Ana watched as her undocumented parents worked hard and became small business owners.
Ana said, “Growing wing up in a mixed-status family allowed me not only to gain a better perspective of the struggles undocumented people like my parents face in this country but also to gain a deep understanding of the privilege I have by being a U.S. citizen. For that reason, I must make sure that I vote and exercise this privilege that many take for granted but that I know my parents have fought hard for me to have.”
Ana has been advocating for comprehensive immigration reform since she was in high school and now she continues to do so as an activist – registering to vote is the first step in making sure her message is heard at the polls.
Rigoberto Gutierrez is a 27-year-old Latino community organizer in the Central Coast area of California and was raised in a low-income immigrant family. One issue that motivates him to vote is raising the minimum wage. His own experiences and the working families he interacts with through his community work provide him an understanding of the importance of raising the minimum wage. He wants to ensure that working families have the ability to reach a better quality of life by voting for the representatives who will stand up and work for his community.
Rigoberto said, “As a young Latino, we have been historically underrepresented at city, state, and national levels. We find ourselves criminalized, underfunded at schools, exploited, and discriminated. We need to have [representatives] who will stop institutionalized racism and [work for our needs]. Register to vote and vote!”
Adriel Rodriguez is a 26-year-old Latino from Orange County and is a Patient Advocate for a community clinic in Los Angeles. He registered to vote because he is passionate about health equity. He hopes that with his vote he can help impact policies that will bring quality health care to all people, especially the most neglected such as undocumented and transgender communities.
Adriel said, “I registered to vote with the belief that somehow my vote will be taken into account to create space for my values and those of my community.”
Ana, Rigoberto, and Adriel are only three voices of millions of others in California. Register to vote TODAY! Don’t miss the deadline to ensure that you have the opportunity to vote this June for the state and local candidates and ballot measures that will impact your community, your family, and the issues you care about. Your vote matters!