Writing at the intersection of motherhood, feminism and my Latinidad

06 February 2013

Dear GOP: Latinas vote too


Dear Senators Rubio & Cruz,

I hear rumors that the Republican Party, which you are members of, are looking for ways to increase their support among Latinos. While your party holds very little in common with my ethics and morals, I do want to lend you two a bit of advice.

I also hear that you are opposing the Violence Against Women Act. tsk..tsk..*shakingmyhead*

Hombres...You can support comprehensive immigration reform all you want and pray that it means Latinos will go red, but it won't happen when you continue to obstruct measures that help Latinas. Do I really need to remind you that Romney lost the Latina vote 23-76?

So get on board with the Violence Against Women Act. I know it would be futile to ask you to get on board with supporting public education and reproductive justice issues, but come on, chicos, we're talking voting in favor of helping to reduce violence against women!

To help you out, here are some facts about Latinas & VAWA from Latina Portrait: The Reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act and Latinas, by the National Latin@ Network and Mujeres Latinas en Acción (pdf):
  • Latinas are only half as likely to report abuse to authorities as survivors from other ethnic/racial groups
  • One of the most significant barriers facing non-citizen victims is the fear of immigration-related consequences should they report the abuse or seek help. Often times abusers purposely misinform them of the consequences of reporting abuse and threaten them with deportation and loss of custody of their children should they seek help. Abusers are often able to use immigration status as an effective tool of power and control. 
  • In a recent study conducted at the National Domestic Violence Hotline, 35% of foreign-born Latinas who called the Hotline reported a fear of calling the police during a domestic violence situation
Just go read the whole thing. If you are going to court the Latino vote, don't forget your hermanas.

Art by Favianna Rodriguez. She wants us to share her art, so download & share.

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