LULAC Urges Increased Protections For Latinos In U.S.
Nation’s Leading Latino Civil Rights Organization Calls New FBI Hate Crime Report a Wake-Up Call for America
Washington, DC - The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) said today the just released Federal Bureau of Investigation report shows data that confirms white nationalist hate groups are increasing dramatically targeting communities of color and members of the LGBTQ community.
“Today’s numbers from the FBI prove Latinos, Blacks, the Arab, Muslim and LGBTQ communities are among those wearing a target on their back every day in America,” says Domingo Garcia, LULAC National President. “It has been placed on them because of blind hate fueled by the politics of distrust and division from President Trump and far right-wing political attacks. We urge President-elect Biden to form a task force that will have the powers to swiftly address this danger with the FBI and local law enforcement “says Garcia.
The report reveals that white nationalist hate groups increased 55% in 2019 across the United States and 43% for anti-LGBTQ hate groups. The FBI says it has identified a total of 940 hate groups in the country, a slight drop from the soaring trend seen since 2015, in part attributed to the collapse of two neo-Nazi organizations. Also, 2019 saw 51 murders attributed to hate crimes, making it the worst year ever recorded by the federal government. The FBI numbers show that individuals are being are being radicalized and recruited using social media to spread their propaganda against Latinos, Blacks, Jews, Muslims and other non-white and minority groups.
“There can be no room any longer in our country for harm inflicted on innocent people simply because of their appearance or the person they love,” says Sindy Benavides, LULAC National Chief Executive Officer. “This is not who we are as Americans and inevitably anyone can become an outcast in the eyes of those who seek to find differences to divide us and weaken what we stand for. Every reasonable American can and must now begin the work of coming together after a very dark period of hate speech used for political gain and LULAC intends to be part of that movement as we have been for more than 91 years,” she added.
The report also reveals that the top three factors for hate crimes in 2019 were bias against racial ancestry, religious views or sexual orientation. The Anti-Defamation League (ADL), the leading anti-hate organization globally with which LULAC works, says the disturbing trend in hate crimes is evident despite fewer law enforcement agencies providing data to the FBI based on the Hate Statistics Crime Act (HSCA).
“When one individual is targeted by a hate crime, it hurts the whole community—that’s why people are feeling vulnerable and afraid,” said ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt. “We urge Congress to immediately pass the Jabara-Heyer NO HATE Act to improve hate crime training, prevention, reporting and best practices.”
The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) is the nation’s largest and oldest civil rights volunteer-based organization that empowers Hispanic Americans and builds strong Latino communities. Headquartered in Washington, DC, with 1,000 councils around the United States and Puerto Rico, LULAC’s programs, services and advocacy address the most important issues for Latinos, meeting critical needs of today and the future. For more information, visit https://lulac.org/