Fireside CharLA

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On April 16th, United Latinx Fund (ULF) in partnership with the Latino Coalition of Los Angeles (LCLA) premiered the first virtual Fireside CharLA. The mission was simple but crucial, to convene leadership and provide guidance and hope during an unprecedented crisis, the COVID-19 pandemic. However, as the issues evolved so did the CharLA. With the murder of George Floyd and the protests that followed, ULF and LCLA further committed themselves to the vulnerable communities they represent and to deliver their issues directly to leadership.

Over the course of six months, the Fireside CharLAs featured over thirty leaders who discussed:

  1. The specifics of their real-time legislation, policies, and investments; 
  2. How these solutions work to address the mounting challenges facing vulnerable communities throughout Greater LA such as COVID-19 and civil unrest over police brutality; and
  3. How these solutions redress endemic inequalities within communities of color throughout the region, now and into the future.
Thursday, April 16, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Featuring Alejandra Velazquez

Join United Latinx Fund (ULF) and Latino Coalition of Los Angeles (LCLA) for our new weekly online series - Fireside CharLA - covering the latest developments on the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on our Latinx community. The series premiered on April 16 and featured Alejandra Velazquez, ULF board member and Sr. Director of Public Affairs at Oportun

On the heels of Governor Gavin Newsom's landmark announcement earmarking $125M in disaster relief for undocumented immigrants, learn about Oportun, a trusted, community lender that provides immediate financial relief to those who do not qualify for traditional lending products offered by commercial banks. Oportun specializes in lending solutions for unbanked and underbanked individuals and families with little to no credit by providing smaller, emergency loans to cover daily needs.

Ms. Velásquez oversees Oportun’s public policy, advocacy and grassroots partnerships across nine states and has more than fifteen years of experience in public policy, advocacy, coalition building, and multicultural/multilingual outreach

 

List of resources shared during this CharLA

 

Thursday, April 23, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Featuring Emeritus Herb J. Wesson, Jr. & Sarah Dusseault

On Friday, April 17th, the County of Los Angeles filed a request for an emergency hearing with federal Judge David Carter, alleging that Project Room Key, their court-ordered effort to help house homeless people at risk of contracting the coronavirus, is being stymied by objections from the cities of Lawndale and Bell Gardens. COVID-19 has not only centered and elevated the ongoing homelessness debate between the state, counties and cities, but it further exacerbates the endemic inequities faced by vulnerable communities of color throughout the region. In response, United Latinx Fund (ULF) and Latino Coalition of Los Angeles (LCLA) hosts the next installment of our weekly online Fireside CharLA series to update on current legislation, policies, and investments that curtail the spread of COVID-19 among our homelessness neighbors as well as how these solutions aim to redress mounting inequalities within our Latinx community.

This CharLA featured Los Angeles City Council President Emeritus Herb J. Wesson, Jr. who served as the President of the Los Angeles City Council from November 2011 through 2019 and has represented Council District 10 since 2005. Wesson is the first African American to hold the position of Council President in the city’s history and has been re-elected three times to lead the city’s legislative body. During his tenure as Council President, Wesson presided over monumental policy initiatives making Los Angeles a better place to live, work and raise a family. Not only have local policy initiatives —which include raising the minimum wage, pension reform and consolidating city elections to increase voter turnout— positively affected local residents, but in many cases the city’s actions have spurred state and national response and served as a model for similar policies.
Also featured was Sarah Dusseault, the Chair of the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority (LAHSA) Commission. Appointed by Supervisor Solis, she served as Co-Chair of LAHSA's Ad Hoc Committee on Women and Homelessness. Sarah is committed to including women's unique experiences in policy making and investing in systems change to bring a crisis response to homelessness. 

List of resources shared during this CharLA

 

Thursday, April 30, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Featuring Andy Carrasco

Under the Governor’s recent Executive Order, utilities are part of our region's critical infrastructure and are vital to the security, economy, public health and safety of California. At the same time, USC recently released an analysis of those most at risk of devastating fallout from the coronavirus pandemic which concluded that marginalized segments of the population, including low-income seniors, undocumented immigrants, and rent-burdened families, face substantial inequities. In response, United Latinx Fund (ULF) and Latino Coalition of Los Angeles (LCLA) hosts the next installment of our weekly online Fireside CharLA series to update on how local utilities are curtailing the spread of COVID-19, efforts to assist their most vulnerable customers, and innovative partnerships with nonprofits to redress mounting inequalities within communities of colordue to COVID-10.

The April 30th CharLA featured a  conversation with special guest Andy Carrasco, Vice President, Strategy and Engagement, and Chief Environmental Officer for the Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas), a Sempra Energy regulated California utility. He is responsible for environmental services and developing and delivering the information that helps meet customers’ energy needs and supports state environmental and social policy objectives. Carrasco leads the company’s energy policy and strategy, which includes issues management for balanced energy, energy choice, affordability, resiliency and reliability. Previously, he was SoCalGas’ director of regional public affairs.

List of resources shared during this CharLA

 

Thursday, May 07, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Featuring Lilly Rocha and Special Guests Tati Polo and Dora Herrera

As part of their COVID-19 emergency response efforts, Governor Newsom and Los Angeles Mayor Garcetti have taken measures to address the needs of two specific vulnerable populations: seniors and hospitality/restaurant workers. To combat food-insecurities and job loss, Mayor Garcetti launched the Senior Meal Emergency Response Program to provide free, emergency home-delivery meals to seniors while at the same time, employing LA's restaurant industry to prepare, package, label, and transport meals to local seniors. Recently, Los Angeles County also invested $3 million in the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank to connect communities and families with food during the COVID-19 crisis.

An estimated 2 million Los Angeles County residents experience food insecurity on an ongoing basis — more than any county in the nation — and the need will possibly increase due to job losses associated with COVID-19.

We heard from our featured guest, Lilly Rocha, CEO/Executive Director of the Los Angeles Latino Chamber of Commerce. Lilly is also the founder of the Sabor Latino Food Industry Trade Show, the nation’s largest Latin Food Trade Show and is co-founder of the Latino Restaurant Association.

This week's CharLA concluded with a live cooking demonstration hosted by celebrity chef Tati Polo and Dora Herrera, whose family-run Yuca's Restaurants are a local favorite since 1976. Both chef’s prepared some of their most succulent dishes including Shrimp Aguachile by Chef Dora Herrera and Rustic Guacamole & Crispy Plantain Chips by Chef Tati Polo. Copies of the recipes are provided in our resources link below!

List of resources shared during this CharLA

 

Thursday, May 14, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Featuring Mark Ridley-Thomas

The USC Dornsife Program for Environmental and Regional Equity released an analysis of those most at risk of devastating fallout from the coronavirus pandemic. The analysis concluded that marginalized segments of the population, including low-income seniors, undocumented immigrants, and rent-burdened families, face substantial inequities that will affect how well they weather the pandemic.


In response,
United Latinx Fund (ULF) and Latino Coalition of Los Angeles (LCLA) hosts the next installment of our weekly online Fireside CharLA series featuring Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas to update on current legislation, policies, and investments that curtail the spread of COVID-19 within our most vulnerable communities as well as how these solutions aim to redress mounting inequalities within our Latinx community.

Learn more about projects and issues Supervisor Ridley-Thomas has been engaged with:

 

List of Resources shared during this CharLA

 

Thursday, May 21, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Featuring Dr. Laura Mosqueda and Dr. Ilan Shapiro

According to an LA Times article published on May 17th, "Blacks and Latinos have borne the brunt of the COVID-19 pandemic in California and other parts of the United States, becoming infected and dying at disproportionately high rates relative to their share of the population. Health experts say one of the main reasons Latinos are especially vulnerable to COVID-19 is because many work in low-paying jobs that require them to leave home and interact with the public. Latinos comprise about 40% of California’s population but 53% of positive cases, according to state data. In San Francisco, Latinos comprise 15% of the population but make up 43% of the confirmed COVID-19 cases as of Saturday".

In response to these alarming trends, United Latinx Fund (ULF) and Latino Coalition of Los Angeles (LCLA) invited special guests Dr. Laura Mosqueda and Dr. Ilan Shapiro series to learn how two local health care systems, Altamed and the Keck School of Medicine at USC, are working to counter the spread of COVID-19 among our most vulnerable communities, how health care providers are rethinking their approach to mental health, and what policy changes are needed to redress mounting health disparities within communities of color.

List of Resources shared during this CharLA

 

Thursday, May 28, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Featuring Nathalie Rayes and Julie Chavez Rodriguez

As we approach the 2020 Presidential election, a familiar question emerges, "Who will Latinos vote for and why?" The Pew Research Center observed that although Latinos represent the largest ethnic electorate (32 million eligible voters), African Americans cast more ballots yet comprise a smaller share of the electorate (30 million eligible voters). This trend played out in the 2016 mid-term elections when only 47.6 percent of eligible Latinos voted, compared to 65.3 percent for Whites, 59.6 percent for African Americans, and 49.3 percent for Asians. 

Regarding the current President, confidence remains low as 35.5 percent of Latinos report “fair” or having “great confidence” in Trump's ability to deal effectively with the COVID-19 pandemic where as African Americans gave Trump a 24 percent rating, Asians 37.9 percent, and Whites 47.4 percent (Center for the Study of Los Angeles at Loyola Marymount University). To discuss these details in depth we invited President and CEO of Latino Victory, Nathalie Rayes, as well as Senior Advisor to former Vice President Joe Biden's Presidential Campaign, Julie Chavez Rodriguez.

List of Resources shared during this CharLA

 

Thursday, June 04, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Featuring Reggie Jones-Sawyer, Sr.

The USC Dornsife Program for Environmental and Regional Equity released an analysis of those most at risk of devastating fallout from the coronavirus pandemic. The analysis concluded that marginalized segments of the population, including low-income seniors, undocumented immigrants, and rent-burdened families, face substantial inequities that will affect how well they weather the pandemic. With the murder of George Floyd by Minneapolis police and the national civil unrest that’s ensued, the endemic inequalities exacerbated by COVID-19 are even more apparent as the nation calls out for systemic change that dismantles institutional racism across every facet of society, not just law enforcement. Our featured guest, Assembly Member Reggie Jones-Sawyer, Sr., will share his efforts to curtail the damaging effects of COVID-19 among our most vulnerable populations, specifically our undocumented neighbors. He will also touch upon the recent murder of George Floyd by Minneapolis police, the national civil unrest that’s ensued, and his proposals to address police violence.

 List of Resources shared during this CharLA

 

Thursday, June 11, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Featuring David Englin and Raul Claros

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic and more recently, to civil unrest over police brutality, The American Red Cross (ARC) Los Angeles Region has stepped up its operations on multiple fronts to develop and execute a series of rapid responses. We invited David Englin, COO of American Red Cross LA Region and Raul Claros, Executive Director of the Red Cross, to help us better understand these initiatives. These innovative emergency responses have fostered new protocols to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and to ensure the safety of ARC’s volunteers and employees, particularly at blood drives and food distribution sites. Additionally, ARC Los Angeles Region launched free COVID-19 Continuity of Operations Workshops for nonprofits and community organizations about steps, policies, and procedures they can take to advance their missions safely during the COVID-19 pandemic. At the same time, ARC continues to prepare for other aspects of its life saving mission, such as providing critical disaster relief services (eg. earthquakes, home fires, wildfires, natural or man made disasters) not only locally but nationally and internationally.

List of Resources shared during this CharLA

 

Thursday, June 18, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Featuring Curen D. Price, Jr.

As thousands of protesters across the country gather to demand justice for George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and other black people killed by the police, a related rallying cry has gained momentum: defund the police. Proponents of defunding argue that incremental police reform has failed and a better solution to effectively address the underlying factors that contribute to crime, like poverty and homelessness, is to cut the inflated budgets of police forces and reallocate those funds to social services, such as housing and youth services.

The operating budget of the LAPD is over $1.8 billion (mostly salaries) and tops $3.1 billion when items like pensions and HR benefits are included. In total, 54% of the city’s discretionary spending is dedicated to law enforcement and activists led by Black Lives Matter - LA are calling to "defund the police" at marches throughout L.A. A coalition of groups led by BLMLA introduced a "People's Budget" proposal last month that leaves law enforcement and police with just 5.7% of city spending. Under the plan, the bulk of taxpayer money would instead go to "Universal Aid and Crisis Management," the "Built Environment," and "Reimagined Community Safety" — including crisis management, domestic violence intervention, and gang prevention programs.

Councilmember Curren Price, Vice Chair of the City’s Council Budget and Finance Committee and he’s the only African American and Person of Color on that Committee, helped introduce a motion that reallocates $100-150 million in LAPD funds to programs supporting communities of color. "We need to rethink what it is that makes people safer and makes communities stronger. We cannot just look at the police in isolation," the motion stated. "There is no doubt that communities of color suffer disproportionately from negative interactions with the police." The motion will be taken up by the Committee on Monday June 15, and is an, “an opportunity to reassess a significant portion of funding”, said Councilmember Price.

Thursday, June 25, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Featuring Dr. Jessica Morales-Chicas and Ricardo Mireles

An estimated one in five students in California do not have access to digital devices or broadband internet as the fight for digital equity has been framed as the “civil rights issue of our time”. This digital divide overwhelmingly impacts low income students of color and creates barriers to learning that exacerbate the educational disparities already existing in schools. Our guest Dr. Jessica Morales -Chicaas helps to frame how, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the digital divide has widened even further as youth of color in low income communities are now forced to navigate the lack of access to technology and high speed internet necessary to participate in required online classes.

Founded by our guest Ricardo Mireles, in 2005, Academia Avance is an independent charter school in the Highland Park community of Los Angeles. This school currently serves a student population that is 92% Latinx. Additionally, 96% of its students are socioeconomically disadvantaged. As the first public charter school in the community, Academia Avance exemplifies student success as academic and professional empowerment and community leadership. Unfortunately, the abrupt shift to online learning has created a large educational barrier for many students attending Academia Avance.

List of Resources shared during this CharLA

 

Thursday, July 02, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Featuring Eddie Martinez, Bamby Salcedo, Adan Chavez and Gregorio Davila

On Sunday afternoon, June 28, 1970, the first LGBT pride parade in the world stepped off at the corner of Hollywood Boulevard and McCadden Place in Los Angeles to commemorate the one-year anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. Since that historic event, countries across the globe celebrate LGBTQ Pride Month every June with parades, marches, and celebrations. This year, those events have been either postponed or moved online to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Furthermore, the civil unrest that erupted due to the murder of George Floyd at the hands of law enforcement has revived conversations on racism within the LGBT community and more specifically, why LBGT people of color are disproportionately impacted by COVID-19 (and HIV/AIDS) and how this community has been marginalized within the larger LGBT equality movement.

As 2020 commemorates the 50th Anniversary of LA Pride, this week's CharLA celebrates this historic milestone by looking back on LA’s LGBTQ Latinx community, its current challenges and the opportunities ahead. We will hear from LGBTQ Latinx leadership on how the community is impacted by COVID-19 as well as efforts to empower this community by queering the Census. Finally, we will look back on some of the community’s most significant accomplishments and historic milestones.

List of Resources shared during this CharLA

 

Thursday, July 09, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Featuring Mike Gipson

In response to the death of George Floyd, Assemblymember Mike A. Gipson (D-Carson) has introduced AB 1196, making it illegal to use a carotid artery restraint tactic to forcibly detain a suspect. The bill is co-authored by members of the CA Black Caucus, Latino Caucus, API, and LGBTQ Caucus.

“This dangerous technique compresses the carotid artery and stops blood flow to render the suspect unconscious. The deadly use of force technique can be performed using any object and can easily go wrong, this time it was a knee,” noted Gipson.

List of Resources shared during this CharLA

 

Thursday, July 16, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Featuring Dr. Elisha Smith Arrillaga & Miguel Santiago

In November 1996, California Proposition 209 amended the state constitution to prohibit state governmental institutions from considering race, sex, or ethnicity, specifically in the areas of public employment, public contracting, and public education

For the first time in a generation, California will have an opportunity to reinstate equal opportunity policies, like affirmative action, that rebuild the path toward a stronger economic future for women and communities of color. The Opportunity for All Coalition is leading the campaign to support the passage of Proposition 16 on the November 2020 ballot which will ask California voters to allow equal opportunity policies to be used by state and local governments to promote good jobs, good wages, and quality schools for everyone.

List of Resources shared during this CharLA

Thursday, July 23, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Featuring Ms. Alma K. Martinez

Ms. Alma K. Martinez is currently serving as the City Manager for the City of El Monte. In this capacity, she is responsible for the day-to-day operations and responsibilities of a city with 115,000 residents, 300 employees, and an annual budget of $165.2 million. Ms. Martinez is the first woman, and the first Latina, to serve as the City Manager in the City of El Monte. 

As city manager, Ms. Martinez and the city council launched several innovative responses to COVID-19 that received recognition statewide for their responsiveness and ability to safeguard public health while also advancing local business interests. Examples include: Dine-Out El Monte, social distanced farmers market, Rapid-Rehousing program, small business webinars, outdoor Movies on Main, small business grants, virtual safari hunts, and voluntary pay cuts for all Senior staff.

List of Resources shared during this CharLA

Thursday, July 30, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Featuring Kevin De Leon

How are local leaders adapting to address major issues impacting our #Latinx community amid the #COVID19 pandemic?

Thursday's “Fireside CharLA” featuring special guest speaker, Kevin de León, President Pro Tempore Emeritus, CA State Senate, discussed: reimagining leadership for LA City Council District 14, addressing homelessness (particularly on Skid Row) and 2020 Census engagement challenges and strategies.

In the course of a remarkable career, Kevin de León has been an educator, activist, community organizer, and the first Latino leader of the California State Senate in 130 years. For the last decade, Kevin represented Senate District 24, which overlaps a significant portion of LA council district 14 which he was recently elected to represent.

Kevin de León was elected to the California State Senate in 2010, and in 2014 he was elected by his colleagues to lead the Senate, making him the first Latino to serve as President pro Tempore in over a century. Before his election to the Senate, Kevin served four years in the State Assembly.

Currently, Kevin is a professor, senior analyst, and distinguished policymaker-in-residence at the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs; as well as a Distinguished Fellow for Climate, Environmental Justice and Health with the USC Schwarzenegger Instituted at the University of Southern California.

 

Thursday, August 06, 2020 at 05:00 PM

Featuring George Gascón

The November contest between Jackie Lacey and former San Francisco District Attorney George Gascón to oversee the nation’s largest prosecutor’s office is being framed as a referendum on criminal justice reform, with Gascón at the forefront of a nationwide movement to elect progressive prosecutors and Lacey representing a more traditional approach.

As hundreds of thousands protest police brutality nationwide and the phrase “defund the police” moves from the fringes to a topic of debate for the L.A. City Council, the race is now being reshaped largely around which candidate is best poised to hold law enforcement accountable.

George Gascón, Former San Francisco District Attorney.

Since his appointment in January 2011 as San Francisco’s District Attorney, George Gascón has earned a national reputation as a visionary in criminal justice reform. He has been named among the Top 100 Lawyers in California by the Daily Journal, and the Anti-Defamation League honored him with its prestigious Civil Rights Award.  The Southern California Leadership Network distinguished him with its Visionary Award, and Win With Justice, WNBA All-Star Maya Moore’s social action campaign, presented him with its Impact Award.

In the many positions Gascón has held throughout his career—from Assistant Chief of the Los Angeles Police Department, to Chief of Police in Mesa, Arizona, Chief of Police in San Francisco, and, most recently, District Attorney for the City and County of San Francisco—his commitment to fairness, service, and public safety has remained steadfast. 

As San Francisco’s Chief of Police, he significantly increased the murder clearance rate and homicides in San Francisco fell by half, from 98 cases in 2008 to 45 the next year. Violent crime continued to drop to near-record lows over the next nine years that he spent as San Francisco’s District Attorney.

List of resources shared during this CharLA

 

Thursday, August 13, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Black & Brown Unity

The current moment sets a historic, global precedent rooted in the COVID-19 crisis, rampant racial and ethnic disparities, and increased violence toward Black and Brown communities at the hands of law enforcement. In response, calls for multi-racial, multi-generational coalitions are elevated in the national discourse as essential to effecting systemic change. Latinx comprise multiple nationalities and identities and are impacted by diverse policy issues, not just immigration. Advancing civil rights and justice throughout America requires explicit knowledge and engagement of both Brown and Back communities and the unique diversity therein (e.g. race, national origin, sex, gender identity, age, citizenship, etc.) as well as other ethnic groups that share common histories, struggles, solutions, and victories.

Featured Guests:

 

Co-Moderator - Judge Rupert A. Byrdsong

Judge Rupert A. Byrdsong was appointed to the bench in 2014. Before his appointment, Judge Byrdsong was a fierce advocate in the courtroom and recognized as a Southern California Super Lawyer Rising Star from 2005 to 2008 and a Southern California Super Lawyer, 2010 through 2014. In 2006, he was listed in the Daily Journal as Ones to Watch describing the top employment lawyers in the greater Los Angeles area.

As a bench officer, Judge Byrdsong has covered several different assignments, including unlimited jurisdiction civil trials, complex (asbestos hub), and an unlimited jurisdiction individual calendar court. He presently sits in the Stanley Mosk Courthouse in Dept. 28. Judge Byrdsong is a member of the LACBA Labor and Employment and Litigation Executive Committees. He is a founding member of the Association of African American California Judicial Officers (AAACJO). He frequently lectures on legal issues with notable groups such as The College of Labor and Employment Lawyers, Consumer Attorneys Association of Los Angeles (CAALA), California Employment Lawyers’ Association (CELA), and the Association of Southern California Defense Counsel (ASCDC).

He is serving a three-year term on the California Judges’ Association representing the interests of the Los Angeles Superior Court statewide. In that capacity, Judge Byrdsong serves as the CJA liaison to the California Lawyers’ Association and is the co-chair of the Membership Committee. Judge Byrdsong was the President of the Langston Bar Association in 2006. He graduated from Morehouse College (Phi Beta Kappa) in 1991 and Vanderbilt Law School in 1994.

Alex Sanchez - Executive Director of Homies Unidos

Alex Sanchez is an internationally recognized peacemaker and co-founder of Homies Unidos in Los Angeles where he has developed and implemented innovative violence prevention and intervention programs since 1998 and has also lead the organization as Executive Director since 2006. An outspoken community leader, Alex’s commitment to disenfranchised youth and their families in the Latino and largely Central American communities of the Pico Union, Westlake and Koreatown areas of Los Angeles, is rooted in his journey that includes having been a gang-involved youth, a target of the INS, LAPD, and Salvadoran national police and death squads.

Alex is a hands-on prevention and intervention professional that has made a positive impact on the lives of thousands of at-risk youth and their families. As a well-respected violence prevention pioneer and expert on gang culture and youth criminalization, Alex has advocated for comprehensive intervention strategies, immigration reform, and Black-Brown unity – promoting racial tolerance and cultural understanding as a form of violence prevention.

Christian Contreras - Esq. for Justice X

Christian Contreras is one of the leaders of Justice X (Justice-X.com) which is a coalition of Black and Latino lawyers who are dedicated to advancing the interests of Black and Brown people as well as marginalized populations in all forms including through legal representation. Christian Contreras is also a junior partner at the civil rights firm Guizar, Henderson & Carrazco, LLP (GHClegal.com) where he prosecutes civil rights cases against municipalities and individual peace officers for Fourth Amendment and Fourteenth Amendment violations primarily stemming from the tragic shooting deaths of individuals. Christian Contreras also has an extensive pro bono practice which includes representing protesters in criminal court who have been arrested as well as representing protesters in civil cases against municipalities and individual police officers for violation of their civil rights.

Christian Contreras’ work also encompasses representing individuals and organizations in impact litigation in areas such as homelessness and worker’s rights. Recently, Christian Contreras and his Justice X colleagues filed a class-action lawsuit in federal court against the City of Los Angeles and Chief Michel Moore for the widespread and longstanding misclassification of Black and Latino Los Angeles residents as gang members or gang associates.

Stephen A. King - Esq. for Justice X

Stephen A. King is a reputable and seasoned trial lawyer with over 100 jury trials to verdict. His passion for justice has led him to obtain several million dollar jury verdicts including serving as a lead trial lawyer on a team of lawyers who obtained the largest non-economic damages verdict in Riverside County of $40 million in 2015. Mr. King’s other recent successes include a $1.1 million verdict against the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department for First Amendment violations in 2015 and a record-setting $3.1 million verdict against the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services in 2016 for Fourteenth Amendment violations.

Mr. King is the founding owner of Kings Justice Law and is a founding instructor at Trojan Horse Method where he travels across the country teaching lawyers trial presentation skills. He’s also a graduate of the world-renowned Gerry Spence Trial Lawyers College. Currently, Mr. King enjoys being a father to his twin boys Kareem and Elijah, and working in co-counsel relationships with other trial lawyers.

Skipp Townsend - Executive Director of 2nd Call

Clifford Thomas Townsend, known as Skipp Townsend, is an American gang expert and former documented Bloods gang member for over 27 years from Los Angeles, California. Townsend is known for his role in several documentaries and movies: How to Make Money Selling Drugs, The '80s: The Decade That Made Us, Crips and Bloods: Made in America, ESPN's Series 30 for 30, and Gangland episode: "One Blood". He also assisted the casting department in two episodes of T.I.'s Road to Redemption. Townsend is co-founder and executive director of 2nd Call, a gang intervention non-profit, and board member of the Southern California Cease Fire Committee. Townsend is often interviewed as a pragmatic expert regarding police-public relations and as an "interventionist" regarding community conflicts.

 

Thursday, August 20, 2020 at 05:30 PM

ULF 2020 Community Grants

Over the past 30 years, United Latinx Fund (ULF) has become a prominent philanthropic organization in the Los Angeles area and is among a few Latinx-specific funds throughout the United States. As a fund distribution agency, ULF coordinates fundraising campaigns through workplace giving programs in partnership with Los Angeles County, City of Los Angeles, Los Angeles Unified School District, and Metro. Through the generosity of employee donations, ULF's community grants program has invested close to one million dollars in more than 600 community-based nonprofits and provides in-kind technical assistance to grantees.

ULF's Community Grants Program provides unrestricted funding for a one year, small-grant between $5000 and $15,000 to grassroots 501(c)3 nonprofit organizations committed to creating a Los Angeles where Latinx thrive. Funded programs must align with at least one of ULF's priority areas: Jobs and Housing. The priority areas are broadly interpreted to accommodate a diverse array of applicants, programs, and strategies working to improve job readiness, increase the number of living-wage jobs and make housing more available to Latinx throughout Los Angeles County. Also, special consideration will be given this year to applicants whose proposals not only align with ULF’s priority areas but also work to address the impacts of COVID-19 within Latinx communities.

 

Richard X. Corral - Interm Executive Director, United Latinx Fund

As CEO and Principal Consultant of Corral Consulting, Richard Xavier Corral, MPP brings over eighteen years of professional experience along with a lifelong commitment to advancing the business of social change among the nonprofit, for-profit, corporate, community-based, government and philanthropic organizations with whom he consults.

Mr. Corral seamlessly integrates his extensive formal studies, passion for building business know-how, and big picture problem solving to craft win-win solutions around education, health and wellness, green economies, LGBTQ equality, philanthropy, housing, and homelessness and dockless mobility. Corral Consulting’s diverse clientele benefit from a comprehensive set of skills, strategies, content expertise, and networks rarely assembled in one firm that are essential to effecting change in today's fast-paced world. What distinguishes Corral Consulting is our ability to empower clients to move from vision to action by crafting workable solutions that cut across business, community, and policy.

In January 2016, Mr. Corral became the interim Executive Director for the United Latinx Fund and along with the Corral Consulting team, has worked diligently to build the organization's capacity on several fronts including growing the board of directors and a newly established advisory board; increasing revenues from workplace giving campaigns; improving financial accountability and oversight; reestablishing the organization's presence online and growing its social media following; producing in-person and online events to promote the organization's mission; and most importantly, doubling the frequency and amount invested from grantmaking. 

Most recently, the ULF team launched the Fireside CharLA virtual event series to explicitly address COVID-19's disproportionate impacts on vulnerable communities of color by featuring select leadership to discuss: the specifics of their real-time legislation, policies, and investments; how these solutions work to address the immediate COVID-19 challenges; and how these solutions address endemic inequities throughout the region, now and into the future.

 

 

 

Thursday, August 27, 2020 at 05:30 PM

2020 Census

For generations, the U.S. Census has been under-representing and undercounting the Black and Brown community. Largely the reasons cited are fear and mistrust of how the collected information is being stored and how it can be used by the government. This stigma has in part been perpetuated by a lack of understanding of how the census benefits them and their communities.

To better engage with communities harboring this mistrust and fear, the Census Bureau conducted a survey in 2018 to better understand what attitudes the average American has towards the census and what motivates them to participate or not. The outcome of the survey painted a pretty clear picture; people were worried that the information could be used against them, worried that the information may be leaked, or was unaware of how census data would be used so they were less likely to participate. When the Bureau looked at what would motivate households to respond, they found that participants across the board were more likely to fill out the census if they knew it was beneficial to their communities. 

Despite an unprecedented $187 million investment in outreach by the state and nonprofits in California, residents of Latino communities have been responding at lower rates than in 2010. Nationally, the trend is the same as the estimated median response rate for Hispanics was 50 percent by August, down by nearly 13 percentage points from 2010.

Stephania Ramirez, Director of Strategic Initiatives, California Community Foundation

Stephania Ramirez supports the president and CEO on special projects, including overseeing regional efforts for the 2020 Census and the Fellowship for the Visual Arts. She previously led the foundation’s centennial campaign, celebrating the impact made by the California Community Foundation, its donors, and grantees over the past hundred years.

Before joining CCF in 2012, Ramirez worked at the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, where she oversaw a portfolio of science learning, research, and exhibit grants in the San Francisco Bay Area along with the launch of the Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at the University of California, Davis. In 2004, she oversaw the Upward Bound Summer Program at Jose State University and provided counsel on college preparatory courses, academic tutoring, cultural enrichment activities, and financial aid services. She has also provided consulting services to clients on grant management operations, fundraising, program budgeting, publications, and events.

Ramirez holds a bachelor’s in mass communications and international development studies from the University of California, Berkeley, and certification in advanced project management from Stanford University.

Araceli Martinez Ortega, Reporter La Opinión 

Araceli Martínez Ortega was the Capitol Correspondent for La Opinion from February 2006 to October 2013. She has been relocated to cover local politics for La Opinion in Los Angeles. Before this, she worked for Univision San Francisco for 4 years. She also has been a contributor to Radio Bilingue, the most important public radio in Spanish in the country since 2002. Araceli Martinez emigrated from Mexico to California in 2001. She left behind a 12 year- a successful career in print and radio. She has a college degree in Communication Sciences from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) one of the most recognized universities in Latin America. Last year she finished her Master’s on Digital Journalism at the University of Guadalajara. She is in the process to do her thesis to get her master's degree. During her employment in Sacramento, she documented the Latino growing political power and how it relates to the community, but also she covered a range of state issues from education, budget, immigration, prisons, health, and elders. 

Adrian Vasquez, Census Field Director

Born and raised in Los Angeles, Adrian has over 15 years of campaign and organizing experience. After graduating from UC Riverside, Adrian began his career as a field director for Kevin de Leon for the State Assembly. He went on to work as an organizer for the International Brotherhood of Teamsters where he coordinated multiple campaigns to improve the working conditions of union and non-union members throughout the country in the food processing and transportation industry. Adrian returned to team KDL in 2012 and was a field, environmental, and labor deputy in the state senate. More recently,  Adrian has managed successful campaigns for Senator Josh  Newman in November 2016 and Kevin de Leon for City Council 2020.

List of Resources shared during this CharLA

Thursday, September 17, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Fireside CharLA Leadership Summit Part 1

From pandemic lockdown to nationwide BLM protests, the 2020 Census, the growing homelessness crisis and the upcoming election...so much has transpired over the past six months, but what progress have we made?

In celebration of Hispanic Heritage month, join United Latinx Find and Latino Coalition of Los Angeles this Thursday 9/17 and next Thursday 9/24 for our Fireside CharLA 2020 Leadership Summit as we follow-up with our previously featured guests on their proposed programs, investments, and policies that work to address the most pressing issues facing Latinx and other vulnerable communities throughout greater Los Angeles.

This week‘s featured guests include: Council President Emeritus Herb J. Wesson, Jr., Assemblyman Reggie Jones-Sawyer, LAHSA Board Member and Steering Committee Member for Greater LA Sarah Dusseault, David Englin, Ricardo Mireles, Adán Chávez, George Gascón, and Judge Rupert A. Byrdsong (see bios below).

 

Featuring 

Adán Chávez is the Deputy Director of the National Census Program for the NALEO Educational Fund — the nation’s leading non-profit, non-partisan organization that facilitates full Latino participation in the American political process, .MORE
David Englin is the Chief Operating Officer of the American Red Cross Los Angeles Region, the second largest Red Cross region in the United States, serving more than 10 million people in four counties. In that role, he oversees the executive directors of the...MORE
Since his appointment in January 2011 as San Francisco’s District Attorney, George Gascón has earned a national reputation as a visionary in criminal justice reform. He has been named among the Top 100 Lawyers in California by the Daily Journal, and...MORE

Herb J. Wesson, Jr. served as the President of the Los Angeles City Council from November 2011 through 2019 and has represented Council District 10 since 2005. Wesson is the first African American to hold the position of Council President in the city’s history...MORE

The Honorable Rupert A. Byrdsong was appointed to the Los Angeles Superior Court on June 18, 2014 by Governor Jerry Brown.  He took his oath of office on September 8, 2014.  His assignments include traffic arraignments, traffic trials, misdemeanor arraignment and trial...MORE

Reginald Byron Jones-Sawyer, Sr. was first elected in 2012 to represent the constituents of California’s 59th Assembly District (So. LA area) in the State Legislature.Chair of the Public Safety Committee and the Select Committee on Ending the Schoolto...MORE

Ricardo Mireles is the founder Academia Avance, a college preparatory charter public school located in the Northeast Los Angeles neighborhood of Highland Park. Development started in 2004, with authorization granted in May of 2005 by the Los Angeles...MORE
Sarah Dusseault is a LAHSA Commissioner and Steering Committee member for Greater LA. Appointed by Supervisor Solis, she served as Co-Chair of LAHSA’s Ad Hoc Committee on Women & Homelessness. Sarah is committed to including women’s unique...MORE

 

List of Resources Used During this CharLA

Thursday, September 24, 2020 at 05:00 PM

Fireside CharLA Leadership Summit Part 2

From pandemic lockdown to nationwide BLM protests, the economic downturn, the 2020 Census, and the upcoming election...so much has transpired over the past six months, but what progress have we made?

In celebration of #LatinxHeritageMonth, join United Latinx Fund and Latino Coalition of Los Angeles this Thursday 9/24 for our Fireside CharLA 2020 Leadership Summit as we follow-up with our previously featured guests on their proposed programs, investments, and policies that work to address the most pressing issues facing Latinx and other vulnerable communities throughout greater Los Angeles.

This week's featured guests include:  Alejandra Velázquez - Senior Director of Public Affairs at Oportun, Alma K. Martinez - City Manager for the City of El Monte, Andy Carrasco - Vice President, Strategy and Engagement, and Chief Environmental Officer for the Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas), Bamby Salcedo - President and CEO of the TransLatin@ Coalition, Christian Contreras, Esq. - Justice X, Dr. Ilian Shapiro - Medical Director of Health Education and Wellness at Altamed, Dr. Elisha Smith Arrillaga - The Education Trust–West, Lilly Rocha - CEO/Executive Director, Los Angeles Latin Chamber of Commerce, CA Assemblymember Mike A. Gipson, Skipp Townsend, Co-founder and CEO of 2nd Call, Stephania Ramirez - Director of Strategic Initiatives, California Community Foundation, Stephen A. King, Esq - Justice X (see bios below).

Featuring 

Alejandra Velázquez currently serves as Senior Director of Public Affairs at Oportun where she oversees public policy and advocacy efforts and grassroots partnerships across ...MORE
Ms. Alma K. Martinez is currently serving as the City Manager for the City of El Monte, CA. In this capacity, she is responsible for the day-to-day operations...MORE
Andy Carrasco, Vice President, Strategy and Engagement, and Chief Environmental Officer for the Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas), a Sempra Energy regulated California utility...MORE

Bamby is a national and internationally recognized transgender Latina Woman who received her Master’s Degree in Latin@ Studies from California State California Los Angeles...MORE

Christian Contreras, Esq. is one of the leaders of Justice X (Justice-X.com) which is a coalition of Black and Latino lawyers who are dedicated to advancing the interests of Black and Brown...MORE

Though Dr. Ilan Shapiro has only been with AltaMed since 2016, he has already made a significant impact on the organization and the greater communities it serves. Dr. Shapiro...MORE

Dr. Elisha Smith Arrillaga serves as the executive director of The Education Trust–West, a research and advocacy organization focused on educational justice and supporting the high achievement...MORE
Lilly Rocha is the current CEO/Executive Director of the Los Angeles Latin Chamber of Commerce. Lilly Rocha is the founder of the Sabor Latino Food Industry Trade Show, the nation’s largest...MORE
Born and raised in Watts, Asm. Mike A. Gipson always knew that he wanted to make a positive difference in the lives of those he encountered throughout his community and beyond. His undeniable...MORE

For numerous years Skipp Townsend has been a key interventionist to the city of Los Angeles Gang Reduction Youth Development (GRYD). Skipp responds to incidents of violence in the community...MORE


Stephania Ramirez supports the president and CEO on special projects, including overseeing regional efforts for the 2020 Census and the Fellowship for the Visual Arts...MORE

 

Stephen A. King is a reputable and seasoned trial lawyer with over 100 jury trials to verdict. His passion for justice has led him to obtaining several million dollar jury verdicts...MORE

 

List of Resources shared during this CharLA

Thursday, October 01, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Featuring Mark Gonzalez

As we approach the 2020 Presidential election, a familiar question emerges, "Who will Latinos vote for and why?" The Pew Research Center observed that although Latinos represent the largest ethnic electorate (32 million eligible voters), African Americans cast more ballots yet comprise a smaller share of the electorate (30 million eligible voters). This trend played out in the 2016 mid-term elections when only 47.6 percent of eligible Latinos voted, compared to 65.3 percent for Whites, 59.6 percent for African Americans, and 49.3 percent for Asians. 

Regarding the current President, confidence remains low as 35.5 percent of Latinos report “fair” or having “great confidence” in Trump's ability to deal effectively with the COVID-19 pandemic where as African Americans gave Trump a 24 percent rating, Asians 37.9 percent, and Whites 47.4 percent (Center for the Study of Los Angeles at Loyola Marymount University).

Mark Gonzalez

Mark Gonzalez has long been active in Democratic politics, leading the charge on some of the most important political victories in Southern California.  He is currently Chair of the Los Angeles County Democratic Party, a position he has proudly held since October 2017.  LACDP is the largest local Democratic Party in the country and one of the most influential, serving over 2.7 million registered Democrats.

Mark’s political activism began early on in his life, playing significant local roles in the 2004 presidential campaign, 2005 City of Los Angeles mayoral race, 2006 gubernatorial race, and the 2008 presidential campaign for Barack Obama.  He also distinguished himself within the LADCP by organizing a series of the successful new citizen voter registration drives throughout Los Angeles County, helping to secure the region as a Democratic stronghold.  Ruby Medrano, a longtime Northeast L.A. Democratic activist, recognized Mark’s commitment and dedication and urged him to join the Democratic Party Central Committee.  Mark was later appointed and elected as a member.  As Mark rose through the ranks of LACDP, he held other leadership positions within the organization including Assembly District Delegation Chair, Corresponding Secretary, and Vice-Chair.  He is Chair of the 51st Assembly District Delegation and an Executive Board Member for the California Democratic Party.

In addition to his responsibilities with the LACDP, Mark also serves as District Director to Assemblymember Miguel Santiago.   Previous to this position, he was a Senior Field Representative to Speaker John A. Perez and Field Representative to then-Assemblymember Anthony Portantino.  Mark currently serves as Chairman of the Northeast Community Clinics and sits on the Board of Directors for Vista Del Mar Child and Family Services as a Leadership Advisory Member.  A native Angeleno and graduate of CSU Northridge, Mark currently lives in Eagle Rock.

Mark also currently serves as the California State Director for the Biden/Harris 2020 campaign. 

 

Thursday, October 08, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Featuring Karen M. Gonzalez & Susan Rubio

Last week, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed two bills (Senate Bill 1276 and Senate Bill 1141) authored by Sen. Susan Rubio (D-Baldwin Park) that provide protections and services for domestic violence survivors.

Senate Bill 1276 ensures domestic violence service providers are able to keep services accessible during and after COVID-19 by removing the 10 percent cash or in-kind matching requirement for state grants awarded to domestic violence programs that provide essential resources. In addition to state requirements, domestic violence service providers must also meet match fund requirements for federal funding sources.

It is expected, with ongoing social distancing requirements and possible economic downturn, that domestic violence service providers will continue to be negatively impacted. This bill now eliminates the match requirement and will provide some flexibility and relief to programs providing essential services in our communities.

Senate Bill 1141 expands protections for domestic violence survivors by allowing them to use descriptions of psychologically damaging and abusive behavior, referred to as coercive control, as supporting evidence in California family court hearings and criminal trials. This behavior of coercive control includes: Isolating the victim from friends, relatives, or other support; depriving the victim of basic necessities; controlling the victim’s communications, daily behavior, finances, economic resources, and many other behaviors that cause severe emotional distress.

Featuring Karen M. Gonzalez 

Karen .M. Gonzalez is a survivor of domestic violence, sexual assault, and child abuse. These experiences prompted her to train through Echo Parenting and Education to become a trauma-informed nonviolent parent educator. She is a public speaker and uses her voice to empower others to live a violence free life.

Karen is also the founder of Helping Hands Resource Center. In addition, she is trained as a healing art leader and a wellness advocate. Her passion is to inform others about the challenges trauma creates in our daily lives and what can be done to overcome trauma

Featuring Susan Rubio

Senator Rubio was first elected as City Clerk in Baldwin Park in 2005, where she focused on providing equal service, transparency, best practices, and protecting democracy for city residents. In 2009, she was elected to the Baldwin Park City Council, where she helped balance the city budget during the recession while protecting vital services like public safety. She also worked on policies that gave women equal representation on city commissions, creating domestic violence programs, and implementing tougher environmental rules. 

Senator Rubio represents District 22 in the San Gabriel Valley, which is in the eastern portion of Los Angeles County. She is Chair of the Senate Insurance Committee and Committee Member of Energy, Utilities, Communications; Health; Transportation; and Governmental Organization.  She is also a Senate Select Committee Member of the Governor's 2019 Report: Wildfires and Climate Change - California's Energy Future; The Social Determinants of Children’s Well-Being; Asian Pacific Islander Affairs; Mental Health; California-Mexico Cooperation; and California, Armenia and Artsakh Mutual Trade, Art and Cultural Exchange.

 

Thursday, October 15, 2020 at 05:30 PM

Featuring Dean Gary M. Segura, Dean of the Luskin School of Public Affairs at UCLA

As we approach the 2020 Presidential election, a familiar question emerges, "Who will Latinos vote for and why?" The Pew Research Center observed that although Latinos represent the largest ethnic electorate (32 million eligible voters), African Americans cast more ballots yet comprise a smaller share of the electorate (30 million eligible voters). This trend played out in the 2016 mid-term elections when only 47.6 percent of eligible Latinos voted, compared to 65.3 percent for Whites, 59.6 percent for African Americans, and 49.3 percent for Asians. 

Regarding the current President, confidence remains low as 35.5 percent of Latinos report “fair” or having “great confidence” in Trump's ability to deal effectively with the COVID-19 pandemic where as African Americans gave Trump a 24 percent rating, Asians 37.9 percent, and Whites 47.4 percent (Center for the Study of Los Angeles at Loyola Marymount University).

Featuring Dean Gary M. Segura, Dean of the Luskin School of Public Affairs at UCLA

Dean Gary M. Segura's work focuses on issues of political representation and social cleavages, the domestic politics of wartime public opinion, and the politics of America’s growing Latino minority.  Among his most recent publications are “Latino America: How America’s Most Dynamic Population is Poised to Transform the Politics of the Nation” with Matt Barreto (Public Affairs Press, 2014); “The Future is Ours: Minority Politics, Political Behavior, and the Multiracial Era of American Politics” with Shaun Bowler (2011, Congressional Quarterly Press), and two books with the Latino National Survey team: “Latinos in the New Millennium: An Almanac of Opinion, Behavior, and Policy Preferences” (2012, Cambridge University Press), and “Latino Lives in America: Making It Home” (2010, Temple University Press). He has another book in press, “Calculated War: The Public and a Theory of Conflict,” with Scott S. Gartner, under contract to Cambridge University Press.

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