The Lead

Latino Affairs Caucus receives official recognition from Pa. General Assembly

By: - June 19, 2021 6:30 am

Pennsylvania State Capitol Building. (Capital-Star photo by Cassie Miller.)

Following a six-year wait, by the Pennsylvania General Assembly, the Latino Affairs Caucus has received official recognition from the Legislature.  

First established in 2015, the caucus aims to address issues facing the commonwealth’s Latino communities and “explore what public policies are necessary” to address those issues, the caucus said in a statement. 

While the caucus is open to all members of the General Assembly, its first four members hail from Pennsylvania’s southeastern counties, including Philadelphia, Berks and Montgomery counties. 

Its members include state Reps. Manuel Guzman, D-Berks; Danilo Burgos, D-Philadelphia; Liz Hanbidge, D-Montgomery; Ben Sanchez, D-Montgomery. The caucus is chaired by the founder and state Rep. Angel Cruz, D-Philadelphia. 

In a statement, Cruz noted the importance of Latino representation in the General Assembly. 

“The Latino population in Pennsylvania grows exponentially each year, and it is time to finally recognize the importance of Latinos in our public policies,” Cruz said. “I’m thrilled that House Democratic Leader McClinton has given the Latino Affairs Caucus official recognition in the Pennsylvania General Assembly. The caucus benefits all Pennsylvanians as we work together across party lines and across both chambers to continue to educate the public about Latino issues and advance Latino causes in our legislative efforts.”

House Democrats also celebrated the caucus’ recognition. 

“This is exciting and extremely significant, especially as we’ve seen a growing number of Latino legislators in Harrisburg in recent years,” House Minority Leader Joanna McClinton, D-Philadelphia, said in a statement Thursday. “I’m proud to join Representative Cruz in embracing diversity and inclusion in the legislature, and this caucus is a great example of that collective commitment.”

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Cassie Miller
Cassie Miller

A native Pennsylvanian, Cassie Miller worked for various publications across the Midstate before joining the team at the Pennsylvania Capital-Star. In her previous roles, she has covered everything from local sports to the financial services industry. Miller has an extensive background in magazine writing, editing and design. She is a graduate of Penn State University where she served as the campus newspaper’s photo editor. She is currently pursuing her master’s degree in professional journalism at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. In addition to her role at the Capital-Star, Miller enjoys working on her independent zines, Dead Air and Infrared. Follow her on Twitter: @Wordsby_CassieM.

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