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FridayFebruary 18, 2011

Latino Daily News: Bringing You the Latest Hispanic Current Events and News Stories 24/7

To reflect the dynamic interests of our audience, Latino Daily News is an online daily news source and virtual cultural center for and about Latinos. We offer the latest news headlines, as well as innovative and insightful Hispanic current events stories, photos, videos, and commentaries from a Latino perspective, 24/7.

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Mexican Mother Sells Newborn to American to Pay for Other Child’s Cancer Treatment

Morelos legal authorities are disclosing the arrest of a Mexican national, a midwife and a U.S. citizen for human trafficking of a new born.

According to the State’s Attorney General the mother, a 30-year old unemployed woman, sold her new born infant to a midwife who in turn handed the baby over to a U.S. woman. 

The mother who was already supporting four children received $416 from the midwife,  while the midwife was paid $1,670 from the American woman from McAllen, Texas. 

The American citizen, tentatively identified as Antonia Martinez, was caught when she applied to get the child a visa at the American Embassy without the proper documentation.  Upon investigating authorities found out the mother sold her newborn to pay for cancer treatment for one of her four existing children. 

Read more at Latin American Herald →

Protests, Riots Over Tuition Increase at University of Puerto Rico Continue

Protests, Riots Over Tuition Increase at University of Puerto Rico Continue

Photo: University of Puerto Rico protests continue

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The bubbling pot that was the University of Puerto Rico for the last three days has once again boiled over as protests were started up again over an $800 fee caused the students’ tuition to jump more than 50 percent.

Though many thought the arrests and injuries were coming to an end after the protest stopped while the interim president was being put in place, they were wrong.

The $800 fee was added in response to the school’s budget being cut by $200 million.

“It is the same situation that many universities in the United States are facing,” said interim president Miguel A. Muñoz. “Our budget is about $1 billion, and we have been cut about $200 million. We need the $800 fee to cover the deficit, and our tuition is so low, $51 a credit, that it’s almost a gift.”

But while the tuition at UPR is much lower than schools on the mainland, the island’s population is also poorer than the U.S., with two-thirds of the students having incomes low enough to qualify for Pell grants.

It is estimated that at least 5,000 of the university’s students could not pay their fee this semester, and the school admits that less than 54,000 students now attend this semester as opposed to 60,000 the previous semester.

Muñoz however, claims the drop is due to instability and not the fee, saying, “As a parent, you don’t want to send your son, your daughter to a campus where you see so many protests, and police.”

A number of students like René Vargas, a law student representing the student body on the board of trustees, were rather angry to see that police had been called to the campus in the first place.

“As a parent, you don’t want to send your son, your daughter to a campus where you see so many protests, and police,” she said. “The university’s intransigence and refusal to talk to students has worsened the whole situation. The students presented a 200-page document suggesting alternatives and ways to increase revenues, and the trustees have not even been willing to look at it.”

Read more at New York Times →

JUST IN: Fire in Neonatal Ward in Colombian Hospital (VIDEO)

A fire broke out in the neonatal ward in a hospital in Santa Marta, Colombia. There were no victims, but the rescue efforts were heroic and heart stopping.  Police are still investigating the cause of the blaze.

Read more by HS News Staff →

WOW - Award Winning Idea for a Migrant Worker House of Tomorrow

It’s expensive, and it could be a while before we see them populating our migrant-rich landscapes. But it is a really nifty idea, and we certainly hope the housing of the future for all migrants looks like this!


The structure would be 800 square feet—about the size of a small one-bedroom apartment—with an “elastic, expanding exterior skin” designed to collect, store, and distribute storm water. Rubber “canteens” in the skin would gather water and swell as they fill up, then route the water to an irrigation infrastructure.


(The “skin” before swelling)


(...And after)


The skin would hold 34,000 gallons of water at a time—enough to irrigate almost 50 acres for nearly a month during cultivation season.

The idea, would be to build clusters of these, thus creating rainfall-capturing sustainable communities for migrant farm workers.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Most Expensive Office Rent in Region, Not in NY City Any More but in Rio de Janeiro

For the first time in history office space in Rio de Janiero has beat out rental prices in New York City, making it the most expensive in the Americas.

In global terms Rio ranks fourth for prime office rentals after third place Hong Kong.  Tokyo with $1,827 per square meter continues in the number one spot.

Rio office rental prices went up by 47 percent to $1,321 per square meter compared to $1,260 for midtown Manhattan last year.  This is the first time any South American country has the most expensive office rent.  Brazil’s 7.5 per cent economic growth provided a great boost to office rental pricing.

The bad news is that prices are becoming unaffordable for small to mid-size firms in the country. 

Read more at Financial Times →

MX Teen Has Been on Hunger Strike at British Embassy, Wants to Be Invited to Royal Wedding???

MX Teen Has Been on Hunger Strike at British Embassy, Wants to Be Invited to Royal Wedding???

Photo: Estibaliz Chavez

Click Here to Enlarge Photo

Estíbaliz Chávez, a 19-year-old Mexican student has been camping in front of the British Embassy in Mexico, in a bid to get invited to the upcoming royal wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton. Image

“After going to prince William’s wedding, I’ll be able to die in peace” said the teenager, who during her time manifesting, has lost fifteen pounds. Which is a double blessing, if in fact she is invited:  you get an invite and look great at the festivities. 

Chávez has built a tent just a few feet from the embassy’s main entrance, she sleeps and keeps her things in there, including paintings she has made of the royal couple, and banners, in which she pledges “Will you let me die, just to not give me an invitation to the royal wedding?”

When asked if, keeping in mind the dramatic situation of violence in Mexico, aren’t there more serious and important reasons to stage a hunger strike, the teen smiles and says “If everyone would fight for their dreams, the world would be a better place” Image

For the young Estíbaliz, attending a royal wedding has been the dream of a lifetime, specially if it is a British royalty wedding.  She has long felt an admiration for the late princess Diana of Wales, which was a ‘gift’ given to her by her own mother. “My mother taught me to love her from the heart” she said.

The teenager gave a letter to embassy officials addressed to ambassador Judith McGregoren, in which she explains her reasons to attend the wedding, as well as admitting her petition is “not normal, but at least heartfelt”.

Now she fasts as she waits for a clear and concise answer from the embassy. “I don’t believe they’ll let me starve to death. They should understand that not only would they be doing me a huge favor, but they would also have the chance of cleaning their image after what happened with the hosts of “Top Gear,” she said. 

Join our FaceBook Discussion...Will Mexican Teens Hunger Strike Get Her Into Royal Wedding??

Read more by HS News Staff →

Venezuelan Students on Hunger Strike Want Human Rights Conditions Evaluated in Country

Twenty-six university students from Venezuela are continuing their hunger strike in hopes of pressuring President Hugo Chavez to allow human rights representatives to evaluate conditions in the country.

The students, which started 20 days ago, are striking at the Organization of American States (OAS) headquarters in Caracas.  Now there are students protesting in front of the Costa Rican and Chilean embassy.

The students are trying to pressure Chavez to allow members of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights to visit political prisoners in the country. 

Chavez has rejected the protesters request and believe the U.S. is meddling after Secretary of State Clinton issued the following statement: 

“Civil society holds governments accountable, keeps them honest, and helps them be more effective.”  We believe that independent civil society, including participation by young people, has a critical role to play in a democracy. We are concerned about the health and well being of the students who are risking their lives for their belief in democratic governance and individual liberties. We urge the Venezuelan Government to agree to a visit by the OAS as a means to promote dialogue and understanding.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Florida Sen. Marco Rubio’s Attempt to Stop Additional Travel to Cuba Halted

Florida’s Republican Senator Marco Rubio’s attempt to block the Obama administration’s expansion of travel to Cuba has been halted, but he has vowed to continue his opposition.

Along with New Jersey Sen. Robert Menendez, Rubio has drafter an amendment to try to stop any new flights from leaving from U.S. airports to Cuba after last month’s White House announcement to ease travel restrictions to the island.

The two tried to attach their amendment to a funding bill for the Federal Aviation Administration, but after staunch criticism from the Tampa Area Chamber of Commerce, which backs the Tampa International Airport’s bid to host some of the flights, it was shot down.

“Increasing direct commercial or charter aircraft flights with state sponsors of terrorism is totally irresponsible,” said Rubio when fist announcing the amendment.

But the Assistant Secretary of State for the Western Hemisphere Affairs, Arturo Valenzuela, said, “If we continue to isolate the Cuban people, we simply play into the hands of the Cuban regime.” He added that under the White House’s newest regulations, the additional travel to the communist island would be “purposeful, regulated travel, where individuals and organizations will have to get licenses in order to go.”

“The intent of these changes is because the president feels that we need to move forward much more effectively to engage directly with the Cuban people to encourage their ability to determine their own future.”

Read more at The Miami Herald →

CELEBRATING Day of the Women of the Americas

President Barack Obama, Secretary Hillary Clinton are recognizing the women of the hemisphere whose challenges and triumphs are honored with today’s celebration - Day of the Women of the Americas.

Women in the Americas are working to promote strong and vibrant democracies, advance the region’s commitment to the rule of law, and uphold fundamental human rights and freedoms. They are cabinet officials and heads of government. They serve in executive positions in the largest private sector entities in the hemisphere. Women in the Americas are strengthening our societies, communities, and families, and building a brighter future for all the people of the region.

Far too often and in too many places in the region, violence against women runs rampant. Some women, especially poor and less educated, live with the threat of being trafficked into modern-day slavery. In order to combat these challenges nations are committing to better training law enforcement, improved support for families, and greater equity in our legal and judicial systems.

A key player in tackling these challenges is the Inter-American Commission of Women (CIM). As the principal Inter-American forum for generating policies to advance the cause of women and promote gender equality, their role in ending this scourge is invaluable, and we look forward to strengthening and deepening this partnership to ensure women’s rights.

According to Secretary Clinton:

“The United States remains committed to working with our partners across the Americas to create new opportunities for women, and address the obstacles that still stand in the way of equality and progress. We must recommit ourselves to the cause of empowering our mothers, wives, sisters, daughters, and friends, and ensuring that in every country, every region and in every continent we speak with clarity that human rights are women’s rights and women’s rights are human rights.”


Read more by HS News Staff →

Chilean Videogame Recognized as one of the 100 Best PC Games of All Time

Chilean Videogame Recognized as one of the 100 Best PC Games of All Time

Photo: "Zeno Clash" One of the best videogames of all time

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“Zeno Clash” from Chilean developers ACE Team, made it to position 67 in the list of the Top Hundred Best Games of all time by PC Gamer Magazine.

Featured next to classic gems of videogaming like Civilization IV, DOOM, Starcraft, Bioshock and Left 4 dead II, PC Gamer magazine wrote about Zeno Clash “It’s not just how strange its world is, but how up close and personal you get to that place and its inhabitants. You’re not just vaguely wandering a world filled with parrot-men, you’re battering them with elephant-femur swords and exploding gangly humanoid avocados across a Labyrinth-like scene. The combat system genuinely earns one of the titles we throw around freely about games: it’s actually visceral.”

The game revolves around a young man named Ghat who seeks exile from his family after killing his Father-Mother, a tall, vulture-like hermaphrodite that spawns human and animal humanoid children.

Ghat travels with a female companion and together they explore a wilderness that gets increasingly bizarre the further they travel.

There are insane occupants of a forest, followed by a psycho mercenary riding atop giant dinosaur creatures in a desert, all the way to a strange fortress in a misty swamp filled with shadow creatures and a masked figure named Golem.


Read more by HS News Staff →

Spanish-Language Play “La Barberia” has Heart, Culture, and Laughs

Spanish-Language Play “La Barberia” has Heart, Culture, and Laughs

Photo: "La Barberia"

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Set in a New York predominantly-Dominican neighborhood, a new play is getting a lot of buzz.

“La Barbería” is a Spanish-language play was being previewed Off-Broadway at New World Stages in New York, and premiered Thursday for an open-ended run.

The play starring Manny Pérez and stand-up comedian Ruperto Vanderpool, is centered around the easily recognizable open-‘til-1 a.m. Latino barbershops where anything and everything is talked about, and argued over.

Co-producer and co-author David Maldonado said that the plat aims to connect oldschool and modern Latino cultures and issues.

“It’s a play about a Dominican family,” said director Waddys Jáquez. “But it’s also about how all Latin American immigrants fight to get something in this society.”

The two-act play is set entirely in El Mago (The Magician) barbershop, and as each character is introduced they each have a small song and dance number, with music and lyrics by Jáquez.

The story’s central conflict is whether shop owner Beny (Pérez) should sell his building for millions and leave the close-knit neighborhood, or stay and remain “Washington Heights’ best barber.”

Overall, the play touches on themes of “family ties, cultural identity, immigration, race, gentrification of the neighborhood, and the implications of Latino flight out of it.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

Chilean Expats Could Get Voting Rights No Matter Their Length of Time Abroad

Chilean Expats Could Get Voting Rights No Matter Their Length of Time Abroad

Photo: Chilean Voters

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The Supreme Court in Chile recently showed its support for allowing Chilean citizens abroad voter rights, no matter the length of time they have been outside the country.

Last year, Chilean President Sebastián Piñera gave hope to 400,000 expatriates when he proposed that they be given the right to vote in the presidential election, but his proposal came with conditions. The voters would have to have accumulated at least nine months in Chile in the last 10 years before the election, but the latest government initiative only required the Chilean abroad to have spent five months in the country in the last eight years.

In late January, the country’s Supreme Court submitted a report to Senate President Jorge Pizarro containing proposed changes to Chile’s election policies, including automatic voter registration. Included in the report were comments from four of the court’s members, many of whom are also members of the Tricel (Tribunal Calificador de Elecciones), the national elections evaluation institute.

Tricel President Sergio Muñoz, believes that Chileans abroad should have the right to vote, and that conditions should not be made in order to.

The Tricel note attached to the report to Pizarro said, “A Chilean’s residing abroad should not be a reason for discrimination, and neither should the demand for a special link to the country, or for residing in the country for a certain period of time.”

Tricel also mentioned its support for extending voting rights to prisoner, as they said the constitution demands it, and recommended that voting polls be placed within prisons and that inmates should be given better access to political campaign information.

Read more at Santiago Times →

Reggaeton’s Don Omar Threatened by Prostitute for Lack of Payment with Frozen Condom   (VIDEO)

An Argentine prostitute named simply “Natalia” alleges to have serviced the reggaetoner singer on three occasions, none of which Don Omar paid for.

“I give you pleasure, I give you my body, I’ll do whatever you ask me to…. He had all that. He has to pay for it!” She said.

“If he denies having met me, I’ll demonstrate that he was with me, and several times” said Natalia “I can even show you the preservative we used the last time—I have it in the freezer” she added.

Conversely, she praised the Puerto Rican’s performance:

“As a man, he is a Sex Machine…” She said. “I am a pro, and I don’t mix business with pleasure, but honestly, that man makes—made me feel pleasure”

But don’t let that confession confuse you, she really is mad.

“We had an exchange of fluids, and now he doesn’t remember the exchange of fluids? He has to give me what is mine, because I already gave him what I offer”




Read more by HS News Staff →

SFA, Oscar de la Renta & Other Fashion Leaders Join in Call for Easier Immigration Visa Requirements

Fashion icons like Oscar de la Renta to fashion retailers like Saks Fifth Avenue are calling on the government to ease the visa application process for all international workers.

These fashion industry players are joining New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, as Fashion Week closes, in the ‘Partnership for a New American Economy’.  The organization seeks a path for undocumented immigrants to obtain legal status in the country so that corporate American can hire more foreign students and attract international talent.

Big fashion industry players like Perry Ellis and Diane von Furstenberg also joined the call to ease visa application requirements in light of snafu’s at Fashion Week.  For example, many models were either delayed or unable to work at fashion week due to those visa restrictions. 

Read more at Online WSJ →

Using Social Media for Crime in Mexico

Though kidnappings and violence are still a very real issue in Mexico, people are still vacationing there, but security professionals are warning wealthy vacationers to be aware that kidnappers are now using social media to collect details about them.

Michael Guidry, founder and CEO of a Texas-based company, The Guidry Group, which helps physically protect its wealthy clientele, says that the popularity of the internet, specifically social media, is putting people at great risk, as they do not understand how much information they are putting out there.

While it is unclear just how many kidnappers are utilizing social media as a means to “cyber stalk” potential targets, Guidry said they’re using smartphones, Google searches, and other high-tech devices to research and locate those taking trips.

Even something as harmless-seeming as posting, “Leaving for Cozumel tonight!” as a Facebook status can make someone a target for kidnappers.

To add to the threat, kidnappers are now nabbing people more often, and for much lower ransom amounts. The lower ransoms are likely an attempt to get money more often rather than get more money from each kidnapping.

“[What’s happening in] Mexico is teaching us a great lesson. Well you normally think that a kidnapping would be a million dollars. Now, Mexican Mafia and drug cartels are going after people a lot lower on that totem poll, and asking for $100,000 or $25,000. So now I do five of them in a day and I get my money, where if I only did one big one, it may take me two or three months to get my money.”

He adds that information on social media is “extremely accessible” and “you can just look on the internet under Google.”

Read more at USA TODAY →

Candidate Gets Prison Time for Telling Immigrants in Mailer They May Not Vote

Candidate Gets Prison Time for Telling Immigrants in Mailer They May Not Vote

Photo: Illegal Mailer

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A Republican running for Congress in Orange County California has been convicted of obstruction of justice when he told authorities he had no knowledge of a letter sent out in 2006 during the campaign. 14,000 letters were sent to Democrats with Latino surnames when Tan Nguyen was trying to unseat Democratic Rep Loretta Sanchez.

The letter, written in Spanish, said: “You are advised that if your residence in this country is illegal or you are an immigrant, voting in a federal election is a crime that could result in jail time.”

Immigrants who have become naturalized U.S. citizens are eligible to vote. Nguyen was sentenced this week to a year and a day in prison.

Sanchez beat Nguyen by nearly 24 percentage points to earn her sixth term representing the central Orange County district, which is home to sizable Latino and Vietnamese-American communities.

Read more at NBC LA →

Majority of Americans, 67 %, Think Its Ok for States to Enforce Immigration if Government is Not

In response to the Justice Department challenge of its effort to crack down on illegal immigration, Arizona has sued the federal government for failing to enforce immigration laws. Most voters continue to support Arizona’s new immigration law and strongly believe states should be able to fight illegal immigration if the federal government is not.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 67% of Likely U.S. Voters – two-out-of-three – think a state should have the right to enforce immigration laws if it believes the federal government is not.enforcing them.

Arizona is seeking reimbursement in its suit against the federal government, and nearly half (49%) believe the federal government should reimburse states for expenses incurred as a result of illegal immigration.

Most voters continue to believe the policies of the federal government encourage illegal immigration, but voters are now almost evenly divided over whether it’s better to let the federal government or individual states enforce immigration laws.

Americans strongly believe that Mexico does not want to stop the tide of illegal immigration into the United States, and 58% think Mexico should be asked to compensate U.S. taxpayers to offset the costs related to this problem.

Read more at Rasmussen Report →

Fellowship Program for Science and Engineering Students - Hispanic Students Only

Fellowship Program for Science and Engineering Students - Hispanic Students Only

Photo: Latinos On Fast Track

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ExxonMobil LOFT Fellowship

Send resume to LOFT@hispanicheritage.org.  MUST note ExxonMobil LOFT Fellows in subject line.  DEADLINE: February 21st

ExxonMobil, one of the world’s largest companies and America’s leading oil & gas corporation, has partnered with the Hispanic Heritage Foundation (HHF) to create one of the most distinguished fellowships in STEM fields (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) for Hispanic college students.
Through HHF’s Latinos On Fast Track (LOFT) program, ExxonMobil looks to nurture motivated college sophomores and juniors students across the country, with a passion for Engineering and Science.

Selected students will be exposed to a top quality company by participating in their world class mentoring program. Each student will be paired up with one of ExxonMobil engineers/scientists to learn how their knowledge is applied in a corporate setting.

Fellowship components:
• Five 1-hour meetings with mentor (virtual or in person)
• Participation in the Harvard-certified ExxonMobil mentee program (on-line), an exclusive
curriculum to introduce Fellows to the culture and vast career opportunities with the company
• $ 1,000 Educational grant
• The possibility to interview for ExxonMobil positions (internships/full time) upon successful
completion of the Fellowship

This opportunity is open to 20 college sophomores and college juniors, with declared primary majors in:

Mechanical Engineering
Chemical Engineering
Electrical Engineering
Civil Engineering

Other majors considered
Environmental Engineering
Computer Engineering
Petroleum Engineering
Materials Engineering
Industrial Engineering
Material Sciences

• Be a sophomore or junior senior in a 4 year college/university
• Must plan to pursue a career in the fields/majors listed above
• Have a GPA of 3.8 or higher
• U.S. residency or citizenship
Once you send in your resume, and if you meet the basic requirements, you will be contacted with the step of this application process. 
Opportunities available through the LOFT program are for Hispanic students only.  Others interested should contact the company’s website directly. 

Read more by HS News Staff →

Study: Most Central & South American Frog Species Extinct or Disappearing

Study: Most Central & South American Frog Species Extinct or Disappearing

Photo: Frogs Face Extinction

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More than a hundred researchers from 21 nations ran a five month long project looking to confirm whether any of 100 amphibian species believed to be extinct are still alive.

The results were pretty grim: only four of the targeted 100 species sought in swamps and rainforests of Central and South America were found. Image

It seems that changing land use, disease, pollution and climate change have been factors that decimated the anphibian population in the world; the beautiful and iconic “golden toad” of Costa Rica, for instance, has not been seen since 1989, thought to be killed off by a fungal disease called chytridiomycosis.

“This is a reminder that we are in the midst of what is being called the ‘Sixth Great Extinction’, with species disappearing at 100 to 1,000 times the historic rate - and amphibians are really at the forefront of this extinction wave,” said Robin Moore, the conservation scientist who conceived the project, funded and managed by the charity Conservation International (CI) and the Amphibian Specialist Group of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN).Image

The Indian project, co-ordinated by SD Biju from the University of Delhi, found five missing species.

“Rediscoveries provide reason for hope for these species, but the flip side of the coin is that the vast majority of species that teams were looking for were not found,” said Moore.

The project team had previously rediscovered three species:

    The Mexican cave splayfoot salamander (last seen in 1941), The Mount Nimba reed frog from Ivory Coast (last seen in 1967) and The Omaniundu reed frog from Democratic Republic of Congo (1979).

The only addition to the final list is the Rio Pescado stubfoot toad (Atelopus balios), a critically threatened Ecuadorian species that lives in lowland rainforest streams.Image

The Indian project is set to continue, as is a parallel mission in Colombia.

Without a doubt, amphibians are the most threatened group of creatures on the planet, with about two out of every five species on the internationally recognized Red List of Threatened Species.


Read more by HS News Staff →

In 13 out of 13 State Census Reports Released, Hispanic Population Exceeds Estimates

In 13 of the 13 states for which the Census Bureau has released information thus far, the Hispanic populations have exceeded the Census’s most recent projections validating the explosive Hispanic growth we anticipated,” said Elizabeth Ellers, executive vice president, Corporate Research, Univision Communications Inc.

The U.S. Census Bureau has released 2010 data for Texas, South Dakota, Oklahoma, Illinois, Vermont, Arkansas, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Virginia, New Jersey, Mississippi, and Louisiana. Based on an aggregation of these states, Hispanics are growing faster than expected:

ο The combined Hispanic population in the 13 released states grew 46.3% compared to the total U.S. Hispanic projected growth of 40.8%

ο When the 13 states are aggregated, Hispanic population growth is exceeding the Census’s most recent estimates by 5.1%, amounting to three-quarters of a million more Hispanics in those states than the Census expected, with 311,000 of those in Texas alone.

ο Hispanics have driven the overall population growth in Texas (65.0%), Oklahoma (50.8%), Indiana (43.4%), Arkansas (40.9%) and Virginia (32.8).

ο In Texas, Hispanics account for 65% of the overall state population growth - 1 out of every 3 individuals is Hispanic.

ο Minorities accounted for all growth among the total state population in Illinois and Hispanics contributed 72% of all minority growth in the state.

ο The Hispanic population in South Dakota more than doubled from 2000-2010.

ο In Oklahoma, Hispanics accounted for nearly 51% of the overall state population growth.

The U.S. Census is expected to release state by state information through March 2011.

Read more at Univision →

Brazil-China Deepen Their Ties with Cross-Listings of Stocks

In an other example of growing ties between Brazil and China, both countries will cross-listing their stocks on each other’s respective stock exchanges.

For Brazil having its stocks listed on the Shanghai Stock Exchange offers Brazilian companies access to a larger source of capital and a new pool of liquidity. 

For China its stocks can now be listed on the BM&FBovespa SA exchange, the biggest security exchange in Latin America.  It is expected that a memorandum of understanding would be signed on Monday.

Investment experts see this is a win-win when two of the ‘fastest-growing economies in the world’ cross-border trade.  China is seeking to attain status as a global financial center by 2020 and is attracting some of the world’s biggest companies for an international equities board and this deal with Brazil is a step in accomplishing that.

Read more at Taipei Times →

Virginia Senate Kills 10 Immigration Bills

Virginia Senate Kills 10 Immigration Bills

Photo: Virginia is NOT Arizona

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A Senate subcommittee rejected 10 illegal immigration–related bills late Wednesday to the cheers of the many Hispanic Virginians who filled the hearing room.

The committee rejected bills that would require businesses and localities to check on the immigration status of new workers; ensure that law enforcement checks the immigration status of those arrested; would count the number of undocumented children attending public schools; and that would have prevented undocumented students from attending Virginia’s public universities and colleges.

“I feel very proud of living in Virginia. I think common sense triumphed today,” said Beatriz Amberman, president of the Hispanic Community Dialogue Organization of Virginia.

She said the senators proved that they care about the future of the Commonwealth. Hispanic Virginians want criminals to be punished, but they also want to work with law enforcement and build trust between police and the Hispanic community so that victims of crime feel safe to report abuse or other violence, she said.

Still, others were disappointed in the result.

“It’s unfortunate most members of this committee have voted to support special interests rather than the people of Virginia,” said John Kwapisz, of the American Council for Immigration Reform.

He testified to support several of the bills because he said the country’s immigration laws need to be strengthened and enforced.

He argued in favor a bill that would require the state to work with Immigration and Customs Enforcement to place deportation retainers on some illegal immigrants charged with serious crimes. He said the customs officers need the help of local and state police.

Others argued in favor of requiring school districts to determine whether students are undocumented in order to better measure the cost to taxpayers for educating students who don’t speak English as their first language.
Two bills managed to survive the almost three-hour hearing.

Senators changed a bill that would have required all private businesses and localities to use the federal E-Verify system to ensure new workers are eligible to work in the United States. The new version matches a bill the Senate already approved requiring Virginia businesses that would contract with the state to use the federal E-Verify system by the end of 2013.

E-Verify bills continue to surface in the General Assembly even though the system is not very accurate, said Claire Guthrie Gastanaga, of the Virginia Coalition of Latino Organizations.
She said the bill the Senate supported was narrower in scope than the three bills the House supported.

The committee also advanced a bill that would allow the Department of Motor Vehicles to cancel the valid drivers’ license of anyone who was deported.
The lone two bills will now go to the full Senate for consideration.

Many of the rejected bills died due to lack of a motion or a second, including a bill that Delegate Jackson Miller, R-Manassas, sponsored.

He wanted to take statewide a program that Prince William County currently uses allowing its law enforcement officers to work with immigration officers to deport serious criminals. Miller wants the program in state law so that the state police can work with federal immigrations officers as well. That would also ensure that a new governor would not eliminate the program, Miller said.

Currently, Gov. Bob McDonnell could sign up for the program with an executive order, said Senator John Edwards, D-Roanoke.
Miller said this is one opportunity Congress has given to state and local governments to help enforce federal laws.

He said without the bill, a man who was accused of raping a toddler in Fairfax County may not have been released from a neighboring county’s jail and then could not have hurt the girl.

Read more at Virginia Statehouse News →

ICE to Audit 1,000 Companies Hiring Records

ICE to Audit 1,000 Companies Hiring Records

Photo: ICE Immigration Raids

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The Obama Administration is increasing pressure on employers to only hire qualified employees. ICE will audit 1,000 companies’ I-9 files and the documents employees used to fill out the form.

“The inspections will touch on employers of all sizes and in every state in the nation - no one industry is being targeted nor is any one industry immune from scrutiny,” ICE said in a statement. The agency declined to name the businesses to be inspected.

Typically audits are performed at the state where the corporation is headquartered, but if agents have a reason to suspect otherwise, they may investigate anywhere the company has operations.

“I do think businesses should be more frightened. Companies across the U.S. need to take compliance seriously. It’s ridiculous to say you are not doing anything. We will wait until the federal government knocks at door,” Dawn Lurie, who advises businesses on immigration compliance, said.

Read more at Signs on San Diego →

Univision Honored as One of Nation’s 50 Most Innovative Companies along With Google

Univision Communications Inc., the leading media company serving Hispanic America, announced today that it has been named as one of the World’s Most Innovative Companies by Fast Company in the magazine’s annual ranking. Univision ranked 34 in the top 50 list.

“Univision’s inclusion in Fast Company’s prestigious list speaks to our team’s continued commitment to driving creative innovation in the media industry,” said Joe Uva, president and CEO of Univision Communications Inc. “It also speaks to the explosive growth of the U.S. Hispanic population and the tremendous positive impact this demographic group has on the U.S. economy.”

Fast Company’s editorial team evaluated information on thousands of businesses across the globe to create the World’s Most Innovative Companies issue. The end result is a package that dares to be different, emphasizing not just revenue growth and profit margins but also progressive business models and an ethos of creativity. Univision is honored to be alongside Apple, Burberry, Facebook, Google, Groupon, and other innovative companies around the globe.

“Innovation has never been more important to our economy and our future,” said Fast Company editor Robert Safian. “These companies embody what unleashing human potential can accomplish.”

Univision Communications is a premier media company serving the U.S. Hispanic community. Its assets include Univision Network, one of the top five networks in the U.S. regardless of language and the most-watched Spanish-language broadcast television network in the U.S. reaching 95% of U.S. Hispanic Households.

Read more by HS News Staff →

FridayFebruary 18, 2011