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Black and Latino families are more food insecure and now they just lost their "first line of defense"


The cut in SNAP benefits worries those who work to fight hunger. Also, in the Axios Latino newsletter, meet a Latina political strategist.


 Axios Latino is the newsletter that summarizes the key news for Latino communities in the hemisphere every Tuesday and Thursday.

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1. The topic to highlight: High food insecurity among Latinos

Black and Latino adults in the United States are at much higher risk of experiencing food insecurity (not having access to enough food) than non-Hispanic whites, according to a study by the Urban Institute.

General panorama

: Inflation, especially in the price of food, has made it difficult for many families to make basic purchases.

And the situation is likely to worsen after the end of the additional food stamp aid established in the pandemic.

In figures

: The study, which was based on annual surveys from 2019 to 2022, concluded that the proportion of Hispanics and blacks surveyed who said they suffered from food insecurity was 50% higher.

  • According to the authors of the analysis, the disparity suggests that these families are more vulnerable to rising prices.

Current situation

: At the end of February the federal government put an end to the expansion of benefits such as the increase in money in coupons of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

  • Five million SNAP recipients (23%) live in Hispanic-headed households, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.

    With the cut, some four million Hispanic households could lose the extra assistance, according to this group.

In Their Own Words

: In the fight against hunger, "the first line of defense is often SNAP, so it's hard to reconcile the erosion of emergency funding," says Kassandra Martincheck, a researcher at the Urban Institute and an author on the study.

  • Marco Grimaldo, strategist for Latino communities with the Christian group Bread for the World, says that leaders of charitable organizations across the US are in communication to learn about the food needs of Hispanic families, which he said vary by education level and immigration status.

To watch

: The White House will hold a virtual conference on hunger, nutrition and health this Friday as part of an initiative against food insecurity. 

2. They seek to give Puerto Rican residents better access to food aid

A group of senators presented a bill on Wednesday so that Puerto Ricans have access to the same food assistance benefits as other US citizens.

News Momentum

: The Puerto Rico Nutrition Assistance Equity Act was introduced Wednesday by Kristen Gillibrand, D-N.Y.;

Richard Blumenthal, Democrat from Connecticut;

and the leader of the Democratic caucus, Chuck Schumer.

  • There is a complementary bill in the House of Representatives, introduced at the beginning of the month by the delegate of Puerto Rico, Jenniffer González-ColĂłn, and which has the support of legislators from both parties.

Why it matters

: The Puerto Rican population, despite being American, has restricted access to several federal programs.

Last year the Supreme Court ruled that Congress can exclude them from disability benefits.

  • Those who live on the island have also not been eligible for the SNAP program since 1981, when Congress excluded Puerto Rico on the grounds of reducing spending.

  • Residents of Guam and the US Virgin Islands, also US territories, do receive SNAP assistance.

Sarah Grillo/Axios

Closer Look

: Puerto Ricans are beneficiaries instead of a limited program called PAN;

the proponents of the bill argue that this puts them at a disadvantage compared to the rest of the American people.

  • The PAN program has a fixed budget each year, while SNAP can be adjusted according to need, for example in emergencies such as natural disasters.

  • Puerto Rico continues to recover from the impact of hurricanes Irma and MarĂ­a in 2017, and Fiona in 2022, which devastated agricultural crops, among other things.

    In addition, its economy has been in a crisis for years that was aggravated by the pandemic.

In figures

: Approximately half of the island's population receives benefits from the PAN.

  • Puerto Rico imports about 85% of its food, which makes it more expensive and means it is often less fresh, according to data compiled by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.

  • Between 30 and 40% of Puerto Rican families suffer from food insecurity, according to a survey by George Washington University.

3. California floods hit farmworkers

Farmworkers in California, where many farmworkers are Latino, are bracing for a setback to their livelihoods due to the latest atmospheric river to hit the state.

Big picture:

Discharges from atmospheric river events have decimated crops and reduced job opportunities for many of the state's farmworkers, who lack access to social safety nets, according to Axios reporter Ayurella Horn-Muller.

"Rooftops flew off."

A tornado hits California and damages houses and cars

March 23, 202301:33

In his own words

: Hernan Hernandez, executive director of the California Farmworker Foundation, tells Axios that lasting structural damage from the storms is worsening the farm labor situation especially in Monterey, Santa Cruz, Santa Barbara and Ventura counties.

  • For many farmworkers, "entire [growing] seasons have been lost" and their homes are "literally uninhabitable," says Hernández.

4. In her words: Tory Gavito

Axios Latino is sharing first-hand the voices of influential Latinas during March, when the United States commemorates Women's History Month.

In this issue, a progressive political strategist shares her fight for democracy:

Who I am

: Tory Gavito, 44, from Austin, Texas.

  • I was born and raised in Texas;

    I am


    from the marrow.

What I do

: I run Way to Win, a political strategy group for donors and organizers who want to support grassroots movements with candidates seeking meaningful policy change that improves people's lives.

What motivates me:

I am inspired by our Native American sisters, who always have previous and future generations in mind.

Photo courtesy of Way to Win.

Background illustration by Axios Visuals

  • I am inspired by my grandmother, a Mexican immigrant who worked in the cotton fields and as a maid in Texas for most of her life.

    And I'm inspired by my mom and her sisters, who remind me every day not to take my privileges for granted.

  • I am also inspired by my daughters, whose lives are a daily reminder of how valuable it is to build more equitable political power in the face of the many concerns that exist today.

How is my day

: I usually get up at 7 in the morning and directly grab my phone.

I read the notifications even though I don't reply to anyone at the moment;

The idea is to assimilate everything pending.

Sometimes there are issues that need urgent attention and I like to dive into that to begin with.

  • I get to work around 9 in the morning.

    There the first thing I do is check how those who make up my team are.

    The rest of the day I focus on calls and meetings.

  • Towards the end of the day, I go through all the emails I haven't been able to see, and write down my goals for the next day.

  • At about 6 pm I go for a long walk, about two hours.

My overall goal is

: Every day my fight is for a political realignment.

  • I think of it like this: If you draw a line from Arizona through the mountains past the Gulf Coast and into North Carolina, the box you draw is where all the opportunities are.

    That is where demographics are changing the most, where people and industries that must be appealed to for electoral issues are moving.

  • If we don't build campaign infrastructure in the South and Southwest to engage more voters and new voters we will be running around aimlessly about how to have long-term political change. 

5. Summary of key news in Latin America and the Caribbean

1. The twenty-eighth 

Ibero-American Summit

 begins this Friday in the Dominican Republic, where the 22 nations in the area plan to sign a cooperation pact in the face of biodiversity loss due to the climate emergency.

  • The countries of Latin America represent half of the world's biodiversity. 

Illustration: Natalie Peeples/Axios

2. A third of the designated positions of trust in Brazil

must be filled by Afro-Brazilians by 2025, according to a decree signed this week by the president, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.

  • The Afro-Brazilian population, classified by the census of that country as


    (black) and


    (mixed race), adds up to 56%.

    Brazil was the last nation in the Americas to abolish slavery.

Pachanga Thursday

Every Thursday we publish our Pachanga to highlight reader achievements.

If you have just celebrated an anniversary, adopted a pet or had a job success and you want to celebrate it, send an email and photo to

We are very excited for our reader Andrea González, who has been a longtime Broadway performer and just graduated with a Master of Arts with a minor in Writing and Literature from Lindenwood University.

Photo courtesy of Andrea González.

Background Illustration by Axios Visuals

  • Andrea tells us that she spent 20 years in the wardrobe departments of Broadway productions.

    The pandemic made her rethink her life and she decided to go back to school.

    We are delighted for you, Andrea! 

Thanks for reading us!

We return on Tuesday.

 Do you want to read any of the previous editions?

Fears of economic collapse raise fears that Silicon Valley will curb its support for Latinos 

Forgotten Latinas: Few Historic Monuments and Sites Honor Women

This Latino launched his film studio to finance the projects that Hollywood ignores: "I got tired of waiting"

Source: telemundo

All news articles on 2023-03-23

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News/Politics 2023-03-30T17:55:31.894Z

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