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ThursdayJanuary 17, 2013

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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Atletico Cleans Up Agianst Betis in 2-0 Copa del Rey Quarterfinal Win

Atletico Cleans Up Agianst Betis in 2-0 Copa del Rey Quarterfinal Win

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Atletico Madrid beat Real Betis 2-0 here Thursday in the first leg of their Copa del Rey quarterfinal matchup.

The home side prevailed thanks to first-half offensive fireworks and several sensational saves by goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois.

Atletico’s vigorous attack bore fruit in the 10th minute, when Diego Costa’s brilliant individual effort set up Raul Garcia’s centering pass to striker Radamel Falcao, who headed the ball into the Betis net.

Costa was also the architect of the second goal, which came in the 23rd minute off the foot of Atletico’s Filipe Luis.

Betis battled back, pelting Courtois with four shots in a single rush. The Atletico keeper came up big again in the second half, turning aside a shot by Jorge Molina.

Though held at bay on Thursday, Betis made it clear that Atletico cannot take a semifinal berth for granted.

Atletico’s crosstown rival, Real Madrid, also won the first leg of their quarterfinal 2-0, shutting out visiting Valencia on Tuesday.

Zaragoza and Sevilla played to a scoreless draw in Wednesday’s quarterfinal action, which also saw league-leading Barcelona forced to settle for a 2-2 tie with Malaga.

The second leg matches are set for Jan. 23-24.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Chavez Has Been Fully Aware Since Operation Last Month, Says V.P.

Chavez Has Been Fully Aware Since Operation Last Month, Says V.P.

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Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez is calm and has remained fully aware throughout the complications that followed his Dec. 11 cancer surgery, his vice president said Thursday in an exclusive interview with Efe.

“In general terms, I see him very calm, very serene, very conscious of all the phases through which he has passed in the post-operative phase,” Nicolas Maduro said.

Chavez, a 58-year-old leftist who won another six-year term in the Oct. 7 election, has undergone four operations as well as chemotherapy and radiation since being diagnosed with cancer in June 2011.

The president is progressing favorably, the Venezuelan government said in the latest bulletin, but continues to battle a respiratory insufficiency caused by a post-operative infection.

Venezuela’s Supreme Court ruled last week that Chavez could delay his swearing-in, set for Jan. 10, without creating a constitutional vacuum, and that Maduro may remain in charge during the president’s absence.

While officials in Caracas continue to evaluate and re-evaluate possible scenarios, Maduro insisted Thursday that Chavez is still president and will remain so for the foreseeable future.

“Right now if you me ask me here, sitting in this chair, the circumstances we are in are that President Chavez is president of Venezuela, the 2013-2019 has begun and he will continue being president of our country,” the vice president said.

Turning to foreign affairs, Maduro said Caracas is ready to improve long-strained ties with the United States.

“President Chavez has given us precise orders, he gave them also to the new foreign minister, our dear comrade Elias Jaua, that we are always disposed to have the best relations with the United States government on the basis of mutual respect and in conditions of relations of equality,” Maduro told Efe.

The vice president revealed on Jan. 4 that Venezuela’s representative to the Organization of American States, Roy Chaderton, held talks with U.S. diplomats in Washington in late November.

Those conversations were conducted with the express approval of Chavez, Maduro said.

The United States remains oil-rich Venezuela’s leading trade partner, but neither country has had an ambassador in the other’s capital since the end of 2010.

Read more by HS News Staff →

“Machete Kills” Gets Release Date

“Machete Kills” Gets Release Date

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The second of three planned Machete movies from Robert Rodriguez, Machete Kills, has now been given a release date – September 13, 2013.

Danny Trejo will once again star as Machete, this time being recruited by the U.S. government to take down an arms dealer attempting to launch a space weapon.

Jessica Alba and Michelle Rodriguez will be returning to their roles as well. Other big names in the film include, Sofia Vergara, Alexa Vega, Demian Bichir, Amber Heard, Lady Gaga and Mel Gibson. Charlie Sheen is also rumored to appear in the guaranteed blood fest as the President of the United States. Riiight.

When the first Machete film was released in 2010, it grossed roughly $44 million. Rotten Tomatoes gave the film a 6.3/10, calling it “messy, violent, shallow, and tasteless – and that’s precisely the point of [this] cartoonishly enjoyable films.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

Blog del Narco: US Imposes Sanctions on Rival Drug Cartel in Sinaloa

Blog del Narco: US Imposes Sanctions on Rival Drug Cartel in Sinaloa

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The U.S. government announced new sanctions against a drug cartel in Mexico, led by the Flores Meza family, acknowledging them as a rival of the powerful Sinaloa Cartel.

The cartel leader Isidro Fausto Meza Flores and seven other members of his family as well as three companies were formally designated as drug trafficking organization by the US Treasury Department.
“This designation broadly prohibits any American from doing business with these eight people, the three companies and the entire organization, and blocks all property under U.S. jurisdiction,” said the text.

The Cartel Meza Flores home base is in Guasave, Sinaloa, and since the early 2000s they have been responsible for importing into the United States large quantities of methamphetamine, heroin, marijuana and cocaine.
The cartels violent dispute with the Sinaloa cartel, headed by drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, has plagued this state west of the country and the northern border.

Besides the cartel leader, the Treasury Department designated as drug traffickers Flores Meza’s wife, Araceli Inzuna Chan, father, Isidro Fausto Meza, mother, Angelina Flores, Flor’s sister and uncles Angely Agustin Meza Flores Apodaca , arrested in Mexico last July, and Panfilo Salome Flores Flores.

Read more in Spanish at Blog del Narco

Read more in English here
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Justice Sotomayor Will Make History When Administers Oath of Office for VP Biden

Justice Sotomayor Will Make History When Administers Oath of Office for VP Biden

Photo: Justice Sotomayor to Administer Biden's Oath

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Sonia Sotomayor, the first Hispanic justice in the history of the U.S. Supreme Court, told Efe Thursday that Vice President Joe Biden’s request that she administer the oath of office for his second term is an “improbable” dream and “a tribute to the Latino community.”

Growing up in a poor neighborhood in The Bronx, “they both would have never entered my mind, either one would have been equally improbable,” she said, laughing.

“It is a tribute to the Latino community, to how important we have grown in America that a vice president of the U.S. would think it appropriate to ask the first Hispanic justice on the Supreme Court to swear him in,” Sotomayor said.

“We’ve come to such a great point that a girl of Puerto Rican parents can be before the country and the world administering the oath to the vice president,” said Sotomayor, one of the nine justices-for-life on the high court.

Sotomayor will issue the oath to Biden next Sunday in a private ceremony and on Monday in a public ceremony before some 800,000 people at the Capitol.

The 58-year-old Sotomayor’s story is one of “Yes we can” achieve the American Dream and she says it was made possible thanks to the struggle for racial integration in the United States.

In her 316-page just-released memoir “My Beloved World,” Sotomayor says that she knew starting in childhood that she wanted to be a judge and that her tenacity helped her overcome the barriers of poverty and other adversity in a home with an alcoholic father and a mother who was often distant.

In her memoir, a frank and disarming account, Sotomayor speaks about her insecurities and fears, her parents’ fights, her handling of her diabetes and her “extraordinary journey” to the highest court in the United States.

Although her frankness carries with it a certain amount of “vulnerability,” the justice says that she wants to encourage people facing challenges to pursue their dreams.

“I do feel a very big obligation to prove myself because as I say in my book, every time one of us fails, it is looked upon as if our community fails, and so we all have an obligation to work as hard as we can to succeed and to keep the doors open for those who follow us,” she says.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Spainish Companies’ Investment in U.S. Up More Than 300% Since 2006

Spainish Companies’ Investment in U.S. Up More Than 300% Since 2006

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Investment by Spanish companies in the United States has more than tripled since 2006 to $50 billion, Washington’s envoy to Spain said here Thursday.

Ambassador Alan D. Solomont also took the opportunity to express confidence that Spain will overcome its current economic difficulties as he addressed a conference in Santiago de Compostela on business opportunities in the United States.

“I remain optimistic regarding the Spanish capacity to successfully surmount the crisis,” the diplomat told people at the event, which was organized by the Galician regional business confederation.

Supporting the development of business and professional links between the two nations is a priority for the U.S. Embassy in Spain, he said.

The United States has become the No. 3 destination of Spanish foreign direct investment.

A favorable business climate and the sheer size of the U.S. market “are two important reasons” for the increase that has made the Spain the 11th-largest foreign investor in the United States, Solomont said.

The ambassador said he wrote to all 50 U.S. state governors a year ago urging them to actively court investment by Spanish firms.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Orlando Ranked as Top Destination Among Hispanic Tourists

Orlando Ranked as Top Destination Among Hispanic Tourists

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Orlando, Miami, and New York were among the top 10 destinations for Hispanic travelers last year, according to 2012 booking data from Hotels.com, the world’s leading hotel booking website.

The U.S. Hispanic population currently stands at 52 million people according to the U.S. Census Bureau and is forecasted to make up nearly 25 percent of the entire U.S. population by 2050.

Offering an array of family activities for children and adults that make it an appealing destination for multi-generation trips, Orlando saw the most bookings among U.S. Hispanic travelers via the Hotels.com Spanish language website.

Hispanic travelers are also more likely to visit theme parks – a category in which Orlando reigns supreme – according to Mandala Research.

Top Destinations Among U.S. Hispanic Travelers (Rank and Destination)

    1. Orlando, Florida
    2. Miami, Florida
    3. New York, New York
    4. Las Vegas, Nevada
    5. Puerto Rico
    6. Dominican Republic
    7. Fort Lauderdale, Florida
    8. Los Angeles, California
    9. San Antonio, Texas
    10. Santiago, Chile

Read more by HS News Staff →

Puerto Rico Gov. Garcia Padilla Remains Committed to Creating 50,000 New Jobs

Puerto Rico Gov. Garcia Padilla Remains Committed to Creating 50,000 New Jobs

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Puerto Rico Gov. Alejandro Garcia Padilla reiterated his commitment to create 50,000 new jobs in the next 18 months.

Garcia Padilla, who was elected last November, took part in San Juan in the 2013 Business Summit, where he announced that he had sent to the U.S. Congress and the Puerto Rican legislature the Jobs Now Act.

The proposed legislation includes a package of measures that the governor said will allow thousands of Puerto Ricans to be hired at a time when the island’s unemployment rate stands at 13.6 percent.

The text includes tax incentives for companies who hire workers within the next 18 months.

It establishes a salary subsidy of up to 25 percent for a period of 18 months for companies that hire any of the thousands of public employees laid off by the previous administration.

Any new business will be able to postpone the payment of bills to the state-owned electric and water utilities.

Garcia Padilla said during his speech that the measure will give an immediate boost to the development of the agricultural sector since the government currently spends hundreds of millions of dollars each year to buy food destined for schools and prisons from foreign companies.

The aim is for more than 75 percent of the products used in school cafeterias to be provided by Puerto Rican farmers, the governor said.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Former Boxing Champ Isidro “Sid” Perez Found Dead After Going Missing Since September

Former Boxing Champ Isidro “Sid” Perez Found Dead After Going Missing Since September

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Retired Mexican boxer Isidro “Sid” Perez, a former flyweight champion who went missing in September, has been found dead, the World Boxing Council said.

Perez, 48, was identified by his sister Reyna Perez at the Mexico City medical examiner’s office, added the WBC, although it did not mention the cause of his death.

In 1990, Perez won the World Boxing Organization’s flyweight championship by defeating Puerto Rico’s Angel Rosario.

His career as a professional boxer spanned the period from 1979 to 1992. In 1997, however, he returned to the ring for two fights.

In all, he fought 69 times, winning 57, losing 9 and tying 3.

Authorities will turn over Perez’s remains to his family on Thursday along with an autopsy report, the WBC told Efe.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Woman on Trial for Killing Husband in Costa Rica, Says He Committed Suicide

Woman on Trial for Killing Husband in Costa Rica, Says He Committed Suicide

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This week marked the start of Anne Maxin Patton’s trial. Patton is accused of killing her wealthy husband and is also facing charges in relation to the trafficking of diamonds.

In January 2010, John Felix Bender died from a gun shot wound to the head. He was found on the 4th floor of the mansion he shared with Patton in Baru, Perez Zeledon. Patton claims they were both in bed when she awoke to find her husband with a husband. She claims she attempted to take the gun away when it fired and killed Bender.

Patton, a Brazilian naturalized as a U.S. citizen, met Bender in 1998. They bonded after learning they both battled bipolar disorder.

Bender reportedly earned $600 million for his mathematical approach to investing on Wall Street.

While living in Costa Rica, Patton says her and Bender regularly traveled to the U.S. to receive treatment for depression, and that Bender told her he wanted to end his life many times.

When investigators arrived at the couple’s 5-story mansion on January 8, 2010, they found numerous guns, and enough diamonds, emeralds, rubies, and sapphires to fill 4 suitcases. Bender had reportedly bought the jewels in Africa to sell them in private auctions. It was suspected the jewels were bought on the black market. If Patton is unable to verify they were purchased legally, the jewels will be forfeited to the state.

With the start of the trial this weekend, Patton and her legal team attempted to prove Bender killed himself.

However, when a Red Cross worker who cared for Patton on the day of the incident spoke in court, she reported that Patton was not showing signs of an overwhelmed and grieving wife, as her blood pressure remained normal, she did not show signs on anguish, and was surprisingly calm.

The defense has also attempted to prove that Patton could not have killed her husband because she was unable to use guns due to a neurological disorder. She was examined, however, and a doctor said she found no reason Patton would be unable to manipulate a gun, and “had no functional deficit.”

The trial is scheduled to end on Friday

Read more here.

Read more by HS News Staff →

New Energy Grid Will Eliminate Electricity Rationing in Brazil

New Energy Grid Will Eliminate Electricity Rationing in Brazil

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Brazil’s MPX Energia power company, controlled by billionaire Eike Batista, will soon add 680 MW to Brazil’s energy grid with two new thermoelectric power plants and allow the government to avoid electricity rationing, the magnate said.

“We have several projects, plants, that are coming online now and will be connected to Brazil’s (power grid) to help avoid rationing. There won’t be any outages,” Brazil’s wealthiest person told reporters Wednesday after a meeting with President Dilma Rousseff.

The additional power will come from the natural gas-burning Maranhao III and Maranhao IV thermoelectric plants, which will add a combined 680 MW of capacity to the country’s grid.

Batista also noted that MPX will boost the capacity of Brazil’s electricity system by 3 GW in 2013 with thermoelectric plants in the northeastern states of Maranhao and Ceara.

The tycoon also met with Mines and Energy Minister Edison Lobao to present the new projects to him.

Referring to a dip in the market value in 2012 of the OGX Petroleo e Gas Participacoes company, which like MPX belongs to the his EBX Group, Batista said such price behavior is normal.

Read more by HS News Staff →

U.S. Attorney Ortiz Releases Statement Regarding Aaron Swartz Case

U.S. Attorney Ortiz Releases Statement Regarding Aaron Swartz Case

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Following the suicide death of internet prodigy Aaron Swartz last week, many pointed to the overzealous prosecution by U.S. Attorney for Massachusetts Carmen Ortiz as what pushed him over the edge.

Earlier this week, Ortiz’s husband, IBM Executive Tom Dolan, took to Twitter to criticize Swartz’s family for their obituary for the 26-year-old. Dolan tweeted, “Truly incredible that in their own son’s obit they blame others for his death and make no mention of the 6 month offer.”

Swartz was facing up to 35 years in prison and a $1 million fine for charges of wire fraud, computer fraud, unlawfully obtaining information from a protected computer and recklessly damaging a protected computer. The charges were brought on after Swartz allegedly downloaded roughly 4 million of JSTOR’s collection of academic journal articles with the intention of providing them for anyone in search of them. As a faculty member at Harvard, Swartz had access to the articles. Both JSTOR and MIT, where he downloaded the documents from a network wiring closet, cried foul.

Shortly after Dolan’s post, Swartz family defenders and supporters became furious and went on the attack. Dolan has since deleted his Twitter account.

Now, as the accusations and finger-pointing continue, Ortiz’s office has released the following statement:

The prosecutors recognized that there was no evidence against Mr. Swartz indicating that he committed his acts for personal financial gain, and they recognized that his conduct – while a violation of the law – did not warrant the severe punishments authorized by Congress and called for by the Sentencing Guidelines in appropriate cases. That is why in the discussions with his counsel about a resolution of the case this office sought an appropriate sentence that matched the alleged conduct – a sentence that we would recommend to the judge of six months in a low security setting. While at the same time, his defense counsel would have been free to recommend a sentence of probation. Ultimately, any sentence imposed would have been up to the judge. At no time did this office ever seek – or ever tell Mr. Swartz’s attorneys that it intended to seek – maximum penalties under the law.


Swartz was a computer programmer, political organizer, and internet activist. While most did not know his name prior to his tragic death, Swartz was the creation of the RSS technology. He was also a major player in the creation of the popular website Reddit. Swartz was also a huge opponent of SOPA, the Stop Online Piracy Act, and has been given a great deal of credit for keeping it from passing.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Surviving Mexican Sextuplets Remain in Critical Condition

Surviving Mexican Sextuplets Remain in Critical Condition

Photo: Mother Salud Romero Ruiz

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The four surviving sextuplets born Jan. 10 in the western Mexican city of Morelia remain in critical condition, the Michoacan state health department said.

Rosalba Martinez Luviano, a neonatologist at the Morelia Women’s Hospital, said that two of the four infants are receiving breathing assistance and are at risk of dying, according to a statement issued by the department.

The two who are breathing on their own cannot be said to be in stable condition due to their extremely premature birth and the pulmonary damage from which they are suffering, she added.

On Jan. 11, the health department reported that a woman had given birth the day before to four girls and two boys, all of whom were in “unstable” condition at the Women’s Hospital.

Hospital director Yara Pineda acknowledged at the time that the condition of the babies was “delicate due to their lack of weight, their pulmonary immaturity and all the complications linked to the mechanical ventilation.”

In addition, she warned that if they survived they could suffer from neurological, respiratory or cardiovascular problems.

She said that the mother, Salud Romero Ruiz, was suffering from anemia with detachment of the placenta due to the fact that doctors had to perform a Caesarean in her 27th week of pregnancy given that her condition was assessed as being high-risk.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Hacker Group Anonymous Attacks Mexico’s Military Web Sites

Hacker Group Anonymous Attacks Mexico’s Military Web Sites

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The Anonymous group of activist hackers took responsibility for attacks on the Web sites of Mexico’s defense and navy departments.

Hackers gained access to all of the information in the defense department’s computers, Anonymous said on Twitter.

The site’s normal public content was also replaced by a statement on the disturbances surrounding the Dec. 1 inauguration of President Enrique Peña Nieto and an early manifesto from the Zapatista rebels, who staged a brief armed uprising in the southern state of Chiapas nearly 20 years ago.

In an initial Twitter message, the self-proclaimed Mexican Hacker Team signaled that “the grenade” would go off at 2000 GMT Wednesday.

“We are taking down Sedena (the defense department). We are hacking the entire server. We are stealing all their information,” the group said in a subsequent tweet.

Sedena issued a statement hours later saying that while its Web site was temporarily down, the department’s internal information and communication systems were “functioning with complete normality.”

The navy department said its Web site was targeted only by a simple denial-of-service attack and that no sensitive information was compromised.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Cuban-born Pastor to Give Benediction at President Obama’s Inauguration

Cuban-born Pastor to Give Benediction at President Obama’s Inauguration

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On Monday, Cuban-American Episcopalian pastor, Luis Leon, will give the benediction at President Obama’s inauguration on Monday.

Leon heads what is known as the “Church of Presidents,” John’s Episcopal Church in Washington, D.C., the church President Obama and his family most often attend.

Leon was asked to give the benediction by the Presidential Inaugural Committee after an anti-gay sermon by Atlanta’s Rev. Louie Giglio caused controversy and Rev. Giglio backed out.

In 1961, Leon, then 12, was one of more than 14,000 children sent to the U.S. from Cuba as part of “Operation Pedro (Peter) Pan”. After his arrival in Miami, Leon was supported by the Episcopal Church and went on to graduate with a Masters in Divinity degree from the Virginia Theological Seminary in 1977.

He is a founding member of both the Washington and Wilmington Interfaith Networks. Leon’s parish is also known for welcoming openly gay members, having non-celibate priests and recently announcing is would bless same-sex partnerships and marriages.

The Benediction will take place in Washington D.C. at the National Mall on Monday, January 21 and will begin at 11:30 a.m.

Another Cuban-American speaking at the inauguration is poet Richard Blanco, who was born in Spain to Cuban parents. Blanco will be the first Hispanic poet, as well as the youngest, to participate in an inauguration ceremony.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Latina Health Advocates Commemorate Cervical Cancer Awareness Month

Latina Health Advocates Commemorate Cervical Cancer Awareness Month

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The National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health (NLIRH) is proud to commemorate January as Cervical Cancer Awareness Month. Jessica González-Rojas, executive director of NLIRH, issued the following statement:

“We now have a comprehensive set of scientific and medical tools to prevent, diagnose and eventually eliminate cervical cancer. Yet, Latinas and other women of color are still more likely to be diagnosed with and to die from this terrible disease, signaling broader injustices in our health system, including barriers to health insurance and culturally and linguistically competent care. In addition to raising awareness of cervical cancer in our community, we must continue to fight so that every Latina can access comprehensive, quality and affordable cervical cancer prevention and health care.”

Background

Despite tremendous gains in cervical cancer prevention, Latinas continue to suffer and die of the disease. Latinas have the highest incidence of cervical cancer among all ethnic/racial groups and the second highest mortality rate after Black women. Latinas face additional barriers to cervical cancer prevention, including high rates of uninsurance and poverty, barriers to information about the disease, lack of culturally and linguistically competent care, and fear of provider bias and discrimination due to primary language, immigration status, race/ethnicity and LGBTQ identity.

As it is fully implemented, the landmark health reform law, the Affordable Care Act (ACA), holds the promise of improving access to cervical cancer prevention for Latinas. Through the expansion of the Medicaid program, creation of new health insurance exchanges, protections against discrimination, and expanded coverage of preventive care without copay, more Latinas will be able to access the care they need. Unfortunately, many immigrant Latinas remain excluded from many of the most beneficial provisions of the law.

NLIRH has issued a number of educational resources for Latinas, advocates and policy makers, including: At the Margins of Care, a policy brief that examines the need for inclusive health care, including cervical cancer prevention and treatment, for transgender and gender non-conforming Latino/as; a fact sheet exploring the impact of cervical cancer on Latinas in Texas; and Cervical Cancer Prevention Policy Recommendations.

NLIRH is committed to improving health care access and outcomes for the communities we represent. NLIRH advocates for federal policies to expand access to affordable and culturally and linguistically competent care for all Latinas, including LGBTQ and immigrant Latinas. For more, please read visit NLIRH’s Cervical Cancer resource page at http://latinainstitute.org/issues/cervical-cancer.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Traditional Puerto Rican Festival is Dedicated to Draco Rosa

Traditional Puerto Rican Festival is Dedicated to Draco Rosa

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This year’s edition of the traditional San Sebastian Street Festivals, which began Thursday in the historic heart of Old San Juan, is dedicated to Puerto Rican singer-songwriter Draco Rosa.

“It’s an honor” for the event - which more than 100,000 people are expected to attend - to be dedicated to him, Draco said in an interview with Efe.

“For me, it’s emotional for many reasons and I’d like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for the enormous support in my most difficult moments,” Draco said.

The Menudo alumnus announced in April 2011 that he was suffering from cancer, but on Dec. 31 doctors confirmed that the artist is now free of the disease.

The singer of “Esto es vida,” “Reza por mi,” “Frio,” “Vagabundo” and “Blanca mujer,” and the writer of several of Ricky Martin‘s hits, said after overcoming the illness that he felt very grateful to begin a new life.

Draco also announced last week the launching of his next album, “Vida,” on which 16 artists collaborated, including Martin, Alejandro Sanz, Juan Luis Guerra, Shakira, Calle 13, Juanes, Mana and Jose Feliciano.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Enter to Win Tickets to Latino Inaugural Event Hosted by Eva Longoria

Enter to Win Tickets to Latino Inaugural Event Hosted by Eva Longoria

Photo: Eva Longoria and George Lopez at Latino Inaugural Event

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It couldn’t be easier to enter for a chance to win 2 Southwest Airlines round trip tickets and 2 tickets to the Latino Inaugural 2013 in Washington, D.C.

All you have to do is go to americanlatinomuseum.org/win and tell them why you believe there should be a National American Latino Museum.  The contest closes today at 6pm EST.

All entries will be submitted into a drawing where one winner will be selected.

You can see Eva Longoria LIVE as she hosts “Latino Inaugural: In Performance at the Kennedy Center.” The night will feature appearances by Eva Longoria, Antonio Banderas, Sofia Vergara, Rosario Dawson, Raúl Esparza, José Feliciano, Juan Diego Flórez, Melanie Griffith, George Lopez, Mario Lopez, Rita Moreno, Chita Rivera, Robert Rodriguez, Llewellyn Sanchez-Werner, Wilmer Valderrama, Ballet Hispanico, Coro de Niños de San Juan, the Esperanza Azteca Youth Orchestra, the Pan American Symphony Orchestra, and other entertainers.

The event is this Sunday, January 20th at 7pm EST, and it will be followed by a reception from 8:30pm-11pm EST.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Latino Attitudes on Abortion: Roe v. Wade 40 Years Later

Latino Attitudes on Abortion: Roe v. Wade 40 Years Later

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The upcoming 40th anniversary of the historic Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision is sure to be a widely covered moment in U.S. culture and politics. But two narratives often underexplored in news coverage are:

  - Changing Latino/a attitudes about abortion and reproductive health that conflict with outdated cultural assumptions; and
  - The continuing invisibility of women of color and young women in discussions on Roe and access to reproductive health despite a growing level of engagement in the pro-choice movement.

The National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health (NLIRH), the only national organization working on behalf of the reproductive health and justice of the 24 million Latinas, their families and communities, is doing important work to correct misinformation around both of these issues.


Important facts about Latino/a attitudes about abortion

In recent months, news narratives have finally begun to acknowledge the myth of the “conservative Latino.” But many misconceptions remain. The truth is that Latino/as have compassionate views on abortion and support access to reproductive care for Latinas. NLIRH is underlining this truth by launching “Yo Te Apoyo” (“I support you”) later this month to give Latino/as an opportunity to tell personal stories of how they supported friends and family who decided they weren’t ready to be a parent.

Still, far too often, Latino/as are characterized as “anti-abortion,” even though research has consistently shown that outdated labels like “pro-life” and “anti-abortion” don’t accurately reflect Latino/a sentiment.


  - A ground-breaking poll conducted by NLIRH, in partnership with the Reproductive Health Technologies Project, found that Latino/as have compassionate views on abortion. This poll showed a strong majority (nearly three in four) of registered Latino voters agree that a woman has the right to make her own personal private decisions about abortion without politicians interfering and nearly three in four agree we should not judge someone who feels they are not ready to be a parent. For more highlights from the poll, click here.
  - A poll from the Public Religions Research Institute (PRRI) echoed NLIRH findings.
      - - The poll shows the majority of Latino/as say that “not judging other people” (72 percent) and “showing compassion for women in difficult circumstances” (68 percent) are very important in shaping their views on the issue of abortion.
  - Latino/as bore out these findings at the ballot box this election season, where they definitively endorsed legal abortion and progressive causes:
      - - Latino/as played a key role in soundly defeating Florida’s Amendment 6, which would have further restricted insurance coverage for abortion, including banning public insurance from covering a woman who needs to end a pregnancy.
      - - Hispanic voters supported legal abortion at even higher rates than white voters, according to ABC News reporting.
      - - Latino voters were also more likely than other voters to say they would approve if their state recognized gay marriage.
      - - Fueled by advocacy by young Latinas across the country, like Angy Rivera and Benita Veliz, voters in Maryland passed the DREAM Act.


Young women and access to abortion

At a time when popular opinion holds that young women aren’t engaged on abortion rights, Latinas, which, as a population skew younger, are engaging. If you’re looking for young voices to include in coverage, consider the NLIRH. The group has made influential strides in the movement and represents a key constituency — and the entire staff is younger than 40. The executive director, Jessica González-Rojas is just 36 and is a rapidly rising star in the reproductive justice movement. Empowering young advocates is also an important part of their work. NLIRH recently hosted a training for young Latina moms, then took them directly to policy makers on Capitol Hill so they could advocate for polices that would support them in educating themselves and their children and keeping their families healthy.

Read more at National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health →

Miami Heat’s LeBron James Becomes Youngest to Score 20,000 Points

Miami Heat’s LeBron James Becomes Youngest to Score 20,000 Points

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Miami Heat superstar LeBron James became the youngest NBA player to reach the 20,000-point milestone during his team’s 92-75 victory over the Golden State Warriors.

James, who achieved that mark at 28 years and 17 days, also coincidentally dished out his 5,000th assist during Wednesday night’s game at the Oracle Arena in Oakland, California.

The athletic forward, known for his all-around play on both ends of the floor, become just the 38th player in league history to get to 20,000 points when he connected on a 12-foot jumper with 2:45 remaining in the second quarter.

James finished the game with a typically stellar stat line of 25 points, 10 assists and seven rebounds.

Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant had previously been the youngest player to join the 20,000-point club, achieving that mark during the 2007-08 season at 29 years and 122 days.

The double milestone for James makes him just the 13th player in NBA history to notch 20,000 points and 5,000 assists.

James and Bryant both came into the NBA straight out of high school and, therefore, started playing in the league at a younger age than past greats such as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar - the all-time points leader with 38,387 - and Michael Jordan.

On Thursday night, the defending NBA champion Heat will take on the struggling but star-studded Lakers in a much-anticipated mid-season match-up at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Senator Marco Rubio to Address Conservative Meeting- CPAC in March 2013

Senator Marco Rubio to Address Conservative Meeting- CPAC in March 2013

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The American Conservative Union (ACU) today announced U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R–FL) will address CPAC 2013 – the 40th annual Conservative Political Action Conference. America’s largest gathering of conservative leaders and activists will be held Thursday, March 14 – Saturday, March 16, 2013.

“My friend Marco Rubio has quickly become one of our nation’s most prominent conservative leaders,” said ACU Chairman Al Cardenas. “Senator Rubio’s participation will serve as motivation to CPAC attendees and conservatives across the country to take action and bring our country back on track.”

Marco Rubio served in the Florida House of Representatives from 2000 to 2008 and was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2010. His committee assignments currently include Commerce, Science and Transportation; Foreign Relations; Intelligence; and Small Business and Entrepreneurship.

The 40th annual Conservative Political Action Conference, to be held March 14-16, 2013, at the Gaylord National Resort and Convention Center, will provide three days of blockbuster speeches, policy discussions and networking opportunities – all celebrating the shared principles of smaller government, a strong national defense and traditional American values. The ACU has hosted CPAC in the Nation’s Capital since 1973, and it now stands as the largest annual gathering of conservatives in the country. For additional information, visit our website at conservative.org/cpac2013, on Facebook at facebook.com/CPACNews, or on Twitter at @cpacnews and #CPAC2013. Media registration (including bloggers) will open on February 1, 2013. The CPAC 2013 schedule and list of confirmed speakers will be announced in the coming weeks.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Air Strike on Algerian Gas Plant Kills 34 Hostages, 15 Militants

At least 34 hostages and 15 Islamist militant captors have been killed in Algerian army air strikes on a remote gas treatment plant where a mass abduction took place, a Mauritanian news agency reported Thursday, citing one of the kidnappers.

“We’re going to hold the rest of the hostages and we’ll kill them if the Algerian army approaches,” the spokesman for the kidnappers told the private ANI news agency, adding that the group’s chief of command, identified as Abu al-Baraa, was among the dead.

Abu al-Baraa had earlier been the militant group’s spokesman.

The new spokesman, who was not identified, said the kidnappers had been trying to transport some of the hostages to a safer place when Algerian military planes bombarded the convoy.

The nationality of the hostages allegedly killed remains unclear.

The spokesman made no mention of reports by Algerian officials that 30 Algerian captives had escaped.

The group of militants calling itself the “Signers in Blood” cell, part of the “Masked Brigade,” said it carried out the mass abduction Wednesday in retaliation for a French military assault on Islamist militants in northern Mali, which borders Algeria to the south.

They said they were holding 41 foreign hostages, along with a unspecified number of Algerians, and would guarantee their well-being in exchange for an end to the French military offensive in the neighboring country.

In a communique sent Wednesday to ANI, the group, which is reportedly led by Mokhtar Belmokhtar, said seven Americans and a number of French and Britons, as well as other Europeans, were among the hostages.

Details are sketchy, but the attack apparently was staged on Wednesday morning first against a bus carrying workers at the natural gas installations operated by state-owned Algerian oil company Sonatrach, Britain’s BP and Norway’s Statoil near Algeria’s border with Libya.

The two people killed in the attack were an Algerian and a Briton, and of the six wounded two were foreigners, according to Algerian Interior Minister Dahou Ould Kablia, who said that Algiers would not negotiate with terrorists.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Hispanic Health:  White Young Adults More Like to Have DUI’s than Latinos and Other Minorities

Hispanic Health:  White Young Adults More Like to Have DUI’s than Latinos and Other Minorities

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White young adults were 50 percent more likely than their Black, Hispanic or Asian peers to self-report driving after drinking at age 21, finds a new study in the Journal of Adolescent Health

While most studies of driving-under-the-influence (DUI) have concerned adults, this one focused on adolescents and looked at a fairly long list of risk factors, explained its lead author Chris Delcher, a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Florida’s College of Medicine. The risk of DUI and dying in an alcohol-related crash rises sharply during adolescence and keeps rising into the mid-20s, when the rate of past-year DUI is higher than any other age group, the researchers report “The goal of this research,” said Delcher “is to find factors that can help identify kids who are likely to drive under the influence so we can use that information to improve national DUI prevention efforts.”

The researchers used data from 10,271 teenagers who participated in the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. Those teens joined the study in 1994-95, at the age of 15 or16 years old, and subsequently reported their DUI behaviors around age 21.

“We found that DUI risk was highest for Whites, followed by Hispanics, Asians and then Blacks,” stated Delcher. He stated that this was consistent with many other national studies among adults. The team also found that adolescents who reported engaging in other high-risk behaviors, such as binge drinking, smoking marijuana and driving other peoples’ cars without permission, were at higher risk for DUI.

Another key finding, Delcher explained, was that a young person’s perception that they had easy access to alcohol at home was a common risk factor for Whites, Hispanics and Asians but not for Black youth. 

Read more at Health Behavior News Service/Center for Advancing Health →

Immigrants Add Billions to the Arkansas Economy

Immigrants Add Billions to the Arkansas Economy

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A perennial question in the immigration debate is whether or not immigrants contribute more to the economy than they cost. That is, do they add more economically as workers, taxpayers, consumers, and entrepreneurs than they “consume” in public education, public healthcare, and public benefits? In some ways, this question is misleading. Education and healthcare are social investments that pay future dividends; they are not merely fiscal expenses. Nevertheless, it is a useful exercise to take the question at face value and do the math. The result, contrary to the convoluted arithmetic of anti-immigrant activists, is overwhelmingly positive. Immigrants add far more to the economy than they take away. And given the aging of the native-born population, the contributions of immigrants (and their children) will only increase over time.

The economic contributions of immigrants are apparent at the national level and in states around the country. Take the case of Arkansas. In a series of three reports from the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation, researchers at the Migration Policy Institute, University of Arkansas, and Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise at the University of North Carolina tally up the myriad contributions of immigrants in Arkansas and balance that with an accounting of their fiscal “costs.” The bottom line is impressive:
“Subtracting the cost of essential services ($555 million) from immigrants’ combined consumer expenditures and tax contributions ($3.9 billion) yielded a net economic benefit to the state of $3.4 billion in 2010.”

“On a per capita basis, immigrants’ contributions ($16,300) exceeded the fiscal cost of essential services ($2,300) by $13,900. That is, immigrants generated $7 in business revenue and tax contributions for every $1 the state spent on services to immigrant households—K–12 education, health-care, and corrections—in 2010.”

During the 2008-2010 period, immigrants accounted for 17 percent of Arkansas physicians, 16 percent of construction workers, 13 percent of manufacturing workers, and 9 percent of agricultural workers. Immigrants comprised 7 percent of the workforce and 5 percent of the population overall.

The reports also highlight the extent to which Arkansas’s immigrants—42 percent of whom are unauthorized—have integrated into their communities and into U.S. society. For instance:

“Half of Latino immigrants and two-thirds of non-Latino immigrants owned their own homes.”

“The length of settlement for Arkansas immigrants is expanding: In 2010, 57 percent had lived in Arkansas or elsewhere in the United States for 10 years or more, compared with 51 percent in 2000.”

In addition, the reports highlight the role that the immigrant community plays in mitigating the aging of the U.S. population as the baby boomers head into retirement. In other words, as native-born workers leave the labor force, many will be replaced by immigrants—and the children of immigrants:
“The non-Hispanic white population is aging, with the most rapid growth occurring in the population over age 45. Retirement of non-Hispanic white Arkansas workers will accelerate with the aging of baby boomers, who are now mostly ages 45 to 65.”
“Latino immigrants and their mostly US-born children form a growing share of the Arkansas population, making them potential key contributors to Arkansas’s future workforce and economic growth.”

“Children of immigrants were 10 percent of Arkansas children in 2010, versus 5 percent in 2000. Their share will continue to grow rapidly due to immigration and the relatively low birth rates among the US-born population, particularly white natives.”

The second report succinctly sums up this confluence of economic and demographic factors:

“Despite the fact that immigrants make up a small share of the total Arkansas population currently, they make up significant shares of workers in major industries such as manufacturing, construction, and agriculture, where they contribute to the state’s economic competitiveness and tax base. The children of immigrants—who are overwhelmingly US-born—comprise a large share of the state’s total child population and are thus important to future population growth. These mostly citizen children (over 80 percent were born in the United States) will age into the labor force in large numbers regardless of whether future immigration flows rise or decline. Investments in these, and indeed all, children represent an investment in the future of Arkansas.”

As the three reports demonstrate in such a compelling fashion, immigrants and their children will be critical to the future economic success of Arkansas. But this should come as no surprise. Successive waves of immigrants (and their descendants) have built the U.S. economy and U.S. society since the nation first came into being.

Read more at Immigration impact →

Spain’s Nadal Set to Return, Knee Healing Well

Spain’s Nadal Set to Return, Knee Healing Well

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Spanish tennis star Rafael Nadal is in the “final stages” of recovery from a knee injury and is on course to return to the ATP Tour next month, the head of the Spanish Tennis Federation’s medical team, Angel Ruiz-Cotorro, said Wednesday.

Nadal has been training in recent days in Barcelona and took advantage of his stay in that city to undergo tests at the Mapfre Tennis Medicine Clinic.

Under the supervision of Dr. Ruiz-Cotorro, the world No. 4 underwent an ultrasound to determine the extent of his recovery from the knee ailment, which has kept him out of competition for six months.

The former world No. 1 and 11-time Grand Slam champion had planned to return to action at an Australian Open tune-up in Abu Dhabi, but a stomach virus forced him to withdraw both from that exhibition tournament and the first Grand Slam event of the 2013 season.

Nadal is now scheduled to return at the Brazil Open, a clay-court tournament in Sao Paulo that starts on Feb. 11.

“The tests confirm that Rafa’s recovery is proceeding favorably,” Ruiz-Cotorro said.

“Medically speaking, we are in the final stages and the results were very satisfactory and the return to the circuit is expected to proceed according to plan.”

Nadal told Efe in August that he was suffering from a knee ailment known as Hoffa’s syndrome, which is also known as fat pad impingement and involves pain and swelling around the bottom and under the kneecap.

The Spaniard began last summer on a high note by capturing a record seventh French Open title with a victory over world No. 1 Novak Djokovic of Serbia in the final.

But he suffered a shock second-round exit at Wimbledon a couple of weeks later at the hands of unheralded Czech Lukas Rosol, considered one of the biggest upsets in the history of that prestigious tournament, and has not competed since.

Nadal, known for his physically demanding style of play and outstanding defensive skills, has struggled to stay healthy during his career, having been forced to withdraw from each of the four Grand Slam events due to various injuries.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Shakira, Gerard Pique Partner with Unicef for Online “Baby Shower”

Shakira, Gerard Pique Partner with Unicef for Online “Baby Shower”

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Colombian pop star Shakira and FC Barcelona defenseman Gerard Pique, who are expecting their first child in the coming days, said they have organized an online “baby shower” to help underprivileged children around the world.

The couple on Wednesday invited their friends and fans to participate in the charity drive, Unicef said in a statement.

“As you all know, we will soon be welcoming our first child into the world, and to celebrate his birth, we’ve organized a virtual baby shower in association with Unicef,” Shakira, a Unicef goodwill ambassador, and the soccer star said in a video message.

“In lieu of receiving gifts for our baby, as with a traditional shower, we would like to offer support for babies who live in conditions of extreme poverty throughout the world.”

A “virtual living room” has been set up where well-wishers can learn about easily preventable and treatable childhood diseases and purchase items such as mosquito nets and therapeutic food for distribution to vulnerable and malnourished children.

Those making donations will receive a personalized thank-you note from the couple.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Extreme Trafficking:  Large Narco Cash Seizure Made in Chicago

Extreme Trafficking:  Large Narco Cash Seizure Made in Chicago

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Gang Enforcement Officers working in Chicago arrested two offenders for marijuana offenses last night.  Further investigation by the officers led to the discovery and subsequent seizure of over $1 million in cash.

When officers arrested two subjects for cannabis possession, the investigation ultimately led to the seizure of $1,048,000 in U.S. currency.

The money is believed to be related to narcotics trafficking. A Chicago Police canine positively “hit” on the funds – which means the canine detected the presence of narcotics on the money.  Also telling was the manner in which the bills were packaged and stored when discovered by officers. 

Cuauthemoc Beltran, 38, and Juan Carlos Tafolla, 27, both of Chicago were arrested and charged with misdemeanors and are scheduled to appear in court in early February. 

Read more by HS News Staff →

Former Barca Coach Pep Guardiola Signs with Bayern Munich

Former Barca Coach Pep Guardiola Signs with Bayern Munich

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Josep “Pep” Guardiola, former manager of Spanish soccer powerhouse FC Barcelona, has agreed to take the helm of Bayern Munich at the conclusion of this season, the German club confirmed on Wednesday.

Guardiola has reportedly agreed to a three-year deal and will replace Jupp Heynckes, who plans to retire at the end of the 2012-13 season.

On Tuesday, Bayern had said the latest reports indicating the Spaniard would be Heynckes’ successor made “no sense.”

The rumors heated up after Guardiola, who turns 42 on Friday, confirmed during the FIFA Ballon d’Or ceremony that he intended to return to coaching next season.

Bayern, traditionally the German league’s top team, failed to capture the Bundesliga crown last season but finished runner-up to English club Chelsea in the UEFA Champions League competition. The club leads the German league thus far this season with 42 points, nine points clear of second-place Bayer Leverkusen.

Guardiola, recipient of the 2011 FIFA World Coach of the Year award, stepped down as Barcelona’s manager in June 2012 after winning 14 titles in four years with the star-studded club, including the 2008-09 and 2010-11 UEFA Champions League crowns and three consecutive Spanish league crowns between 2009 and 2011.

“You have to say: ‘hats off,” former German soccer great and Bayern’s honorary president, Franz Beckenbauer, said of the signing.

Read more by HS News Staff →

SPAIN: Number of Registered Foreigners Drops, First Time in 15 Years

SPAIN: Number of Registered Foreigners Drops, First Time in 15 Years

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The number of foreigners registered in Spain at the beginning of January 2012 fell for the first time in the last 15 years, official figures released Wednesday show.

A total of 5,736,258 people of foreign origin were registered in Spain on Jan. 1, 2012, a figure that was 15,229 fewer than in 2011.

Spain - according to National Statistics Institute, or INE, figures - had a total population of 47,265,321 on that date, almost 75,000 more than in January 2011, when there were 47,190,493 people living in the Iberian nation.

Although Spain’s total population has not stopped growing over the past 15 years, this time the number of foreigners did not continue the trend shown since 1998, the year in which 637,085 registered foreigners were counted out of a total population of 39,852,651.

The decline amounts to 0.3 percent with respect to the year before.

By country of nationality, Romanian citizens constitute the most numerous foreign group in Spain with 897,203, followed by Moroccans with 788,563, Britons with 397,892, Ecuadorians with 308,174 and Colombians with 246,345.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Contemporary Latin American Art to be Featured at Phoenix Art Museum

Contemporary Latin American Art to be Featured at Phoenix Art Museum

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Phoenix Art Museum presents Order, Chaos, and the Space Between: Contemporary Latin American Art from the Diane and Bruce Halle Collection, beginning February 6, 2013.

This exhibition features many of the most cutting-edge contemporary works produced in Latin American today and is drawn from the Halle Collection, internationally renowned as one of the most significant collections of art of this region. It includes more than 50 works from Argentina, Brazil, Cuba, Mexico, Peru, and Venezuela by artists such as Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Helio Oiticica, and Doris Salcedo, as well as many other innovative artists whose works figure prominently in today’s global art scene.

One of the most striking installations—the 30,000 individual black paper moths and butterflies that comprise Carlos Amorales’ (Mexico) Black Cloud, will be installed by the artist and will weave its path through the Museum and lead visitors to the exhibition.

The exhibition features a wide range of artworks created after 1945. The exhibition, like the Halle Collection itself, seeks to broaden the community’s understanding and awareness of Latin American art.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Immigration News:  Brazilian Couple Plead Guilty to Human Smuggling

Immigration News:  Brazilian Couple Plead Guilty to Human Smuggling

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Two Brazilian nationals pleaded guilty yesterday in Miami to smuggling undocumented migrants to the United States for profit.

Juliana Rose Tome-Froes, 36, and her husband, Fabio Rodrigues Froes, 49, pleaded guilty in Florida of bringing and attempting to bring aliens to the U.S. for commercial advantage and private financial gain.

According to plea documents, from at least October 2008 until approximately September 2010, the defendants organized, operated and managed a human smuggling network that spanned from Brazil to France, England, The Bahamas and the United States. 

The defendants met with undocumented migrants and negotiated forms of payment to be smuggled into the United States.  Before the undocumented migrants departed Brazil, the defendants instructed them to act like tourists and explained that the itinerary through Europe would support a tourist cover story.  In exchange for approximately $16,000, the couple, arranged air transportation from Brazil to Paris, then London and Nassau, Bahamas.  Tome-Froes arranged the undocumented migrants’ lodging in Paris and Nassau, and then instructed them to fly to Freeport, Bahamas, where they waited for a boat to transport them to the United States.  For the final leg into the United States, Tome-Froes coordinated with various individuals in South Florida to pilot a small boat to Freeport, which picked up the undocumented migrants and transported them to the United States.

At sentencing, scheduled for March 21, 2013, Juliana Tome-Froes faces a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison and a $250,000 fine, and Fabio Froes faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Read more by HS News Staff →

New Spanish Website Engages Hispanic Community About Sexual Health

New Spanish Website Engages Hispanic Community About Sexual Health

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Beforeplay.org, a Colorado public health initiative aimed at reducing the number of unintended pregnancies, has recently launched a new Spanish website, Beforeplay.org/es

The new Spanish language site provides useful resources on a range of sexual health topics, including: information about birth control and contraceptive methods, pregnancy, STDs, and ways to initiate important sexual health conversations.

Beforeplay.org seeks to normalize the conversation about sexual health in Colorado communities, and engaging Hispanics is a priority for the initiative.  In a 2010 report by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE), Hispanic women represented 44.4 percent of the births resulting from an unintended pregnancy. 

Unintended pregnancy has a significant impact on educational attainment.  The Hispanic graduation rate in 2007 was 57.1 percent.  By engaging the Hispanic community with a range of online tools and information, Beforeplay.org hopes to significantly decrease the rate of unintended pregnancies, and create a new outpost for sexual health that previously was lacking.

Beforeplay.org offers a variety of tools to help people plan for pregnancy, including different ways one can talk to partners, family, friends and health care providers about these issues.  Beforeplay.org also makes it easy to find important resources such as nearby health centers and emergency contraception.

The community at Beforeplay.org shares true stories that touch upon the conversations that many only have behind closed doors.  Testimonials discussing everything from STDs, to family planning, to experiences with different contraceptives all are available on the video section of the Beforeplay.org site.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Vote for Your Favorite Mural from Jose Cuervo’s “Tradicional Mural Project” on Facebook

Vote for Your Favorite Mural from Jose Cuervo’s “Tradicional Mural Project” on Facebook

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Jose Cuervo Tradicional has officially opened the voting phase to select the most inspiring mural in the Tradicional Mural Project. 

The nationwide program, inspired by the influence of Latino heritage, showcases 10 original murals created by artists from across the United States, and invites consumers to vote through February 28th, 2013 on Facebook.

The artist and mural with the most votes will receive a $15,000 grant as well as a $15,000 donation to a local organization in the region they represent, on behalf of Jose Cuervo Tradicional. All consumers 21 years of age and older will be eligible to vote at the Jose Cuervo Tradicional Mural Project’s Facebook page from January 15 through February 28.

Only votes received at the Jose Cuervo Tradicional Mural Project’s Facebook page during this time period will determine which of the 10 finalists will win. The grand prize winner will be announced in March 2013.

The 10 artists, selected on the basis of submitted art portfolios and a personal essay, were given thirty days to complete their murals, which were unveiled at an exclusive event in Chicago in November 2012.

Each mural explored Latino themes around music, education and family that help paint the nation’s cultural melting pot through a range of traditional and contemporary painting styles. All 10 murals will be showcased in a prominent artistic venue later in the year.

Read more by HS News Staff →

President Obama Attempts Gun Control Through 23 Executive Orders

President Obama Attempts Gun Control Through 23 Executive Orders

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U.S. President Barack Obama on Wednesday announced 23 executive orders to tighten gun controls, among them prohibiting the sale of assault weapons, mandatory criminal background checks on all gun purchasers and increased medical coverage for mental health issues.

The measures, which do not require congressional approval, were announced by Obama in response to the Dec. 14 massacre at the Sandy Hook elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut, where 20 children and eight adults died.

“We can’t put this off any longer,” Obama said, adding that he intends to use “whatever weight this office holds” to implement the proposals.

“I also believe most gun owners agree that we can respect the Second Amendment (the right to keep and bear arms) while keeping an irresponsible, law-breaking few from inflicting harm on a massive scale,” said the president.

In addition, Obama will restrict access to high-capacity ammunition clips and urge states to share their databases on criminal records on the federal level.

Moreover, the plan will strengthen security at elementary schools and high schools, will provide funds to hire about 1,000 school advisers and psychologists and update emergency plans.

Obama announced the measures after receiving suggestions from the team he established headed by Vice President Joe Biden that interviewed members of civil society, security officials and members of the education sector.

The executive orders also include increased budgetary resources to facilitate access to mental health care for students and young people via training 5,000 medical professionals specializing in that area.

Read more by HS News Staff →



ThursdayJanuary 17, 2013