“Ya es hora” is a historic non-partisan Latino civic participation campaign that was launched as the Latino community’s action-oriented follow-up to the mobilizations of 2006. The campaign represents the largest and most comprehensive effort to incorporate Latinos as full participants in the American political process. Unlike past approaches which focused on naturalization or voter registration, this multi-layered campaign takes a comprehensive approach that links naturalization to voter participation under a single message “it’s time.”
During the spring of 2006, an estimated three to five million people participated in pro-immigrant marches and demonstrations in cities across the country. These demonstrations galvanized Latino communities nationwide, infusing an historic and unprecedented fervor of civic participation that has the potential to reshape the future of American politics. The mobilizations are considered one of the first national movements primarily driven by Latinos, and are being regarded as the birth of a new social movement within the Latino community. In a 2006 national survey of Latinos by the Pew Hispanic Center, nearly two-thirds (63%) of respondents believe that the marches signaled the beginning of a sustained Hispanic/Latino social movement within the United States. This sentiment was not only strong among the Latino immigrant population but was just as strong among native born Latinos (62%).
Over the past two decades, the Latino electorate has grown significantly. In 2004, nearly eight million (7.5) Latinos voted in the November election. As the country prepares for an historic presidential election in 2008, the subplot will be the rise of U.S. Latinos as increasingly engaged actors in the political process.
Lead by a joint effort between national Latino organizations including Mi Familia Vota, the NALEO Educational Fund, the National Council of La Raza and Spanish language media companies Entravision Communications, ImpreMedia and Univision Communications, the campaign seeks to increase Latino civic participation by assisting eligible legal permanent residents to apply for citizenship, and by educating, registering, and mobilizing Latino U.S. citizens to vote. The strategy of the campaign has focused on removing barriers that have prevented many from becoming full participants.
YA ES HORA KICKS OFF “LIBERA TU VOZ” CAMPAIGN TO ENCOURAGE VOTER REGISTRATION AMONG LATINOS
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