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Office of Latino Affairs

Our Vision

The Commission on Hispanic-Latino Affairs exists to act as a liaison between government and the community.

This role means that the Commission helps the community bring issues, concerns and needs to the attention of the government, while helping government to access the community to share their thoughts and services.

Our Purpose

The purpose of the Ohio Latino Affairs Commission is to advise state government on issues affecting Hispanic Ohioans, to connect the diverse Latino communities across the state, and to build the capacity of community organizations so they may better serve the fast growing population of Ohio.

The commission serves as a liaison between government and the Hispanic/Latino community in Ohio and advocates the development and implementation of policies and programs to address the needs of the Hispanic/Latino Ohioans, especially but not limited to education, employment, economic development, health and housing.

Our Core Values

  • Building cooperation and understanding between Hispanic Ohioans and Government by providing Hispanics with information, resources and by informing the Governor, Legislature and state agencies about Hispanic issues throughout the State.

  • Collaborating with the community by promoting community awareness, education, engagement and inclusion in mainstream society to ensure Latinos are part of the foundation and fabric of the state.

  • Partnering with state agencies to create institutional change to assure equity and access to culturally competent programs and services for Latinos.

  • Identifying Hispanic Ohioans issues and concerns through public policy analysis and data driven outcome-based research in order to create awareness of issues to form the foundation for institutional and systemic change in the Ohio state government.

  • Engaging with the National Latino Agenda and aligning our initiatives with the efforts that seek the integration and empowerment of Hispanic and Latinos in the United States.

  • Planning the work of the commission based on strategic priorities that consistently impact and address the needs of the Latino community in Ohio. The strategic plan will be the road-map that will guide the Commission in identifying future initiatives and goals.

  • Encouraging new ideas and supporting openness and acceptance of differing ideas or beliefs. The commission respects the opinions of others and will provide a safe environment for all voices, opinions, ideas and beliefs.

What We Do

The Ohio Commission on Hispanic/Latino Affairs was created in 1977 with seventeen mandates proscribed in sections 121.32 and 121.33 of the Ohio Revised Code. These mandates fall into one of three categories:

  • TO ADVISE [Public Policy Center] the Governor, the Ohio General Assembly, and state government agencies on all matters affecting Hispanic Ohioans, by issuing reports, proposing programs, commenting on legislation, and conducting policy-related research.
  • TO CONNECT [Latino Community Network] the diverse Latino communities across the State of Ohio by serving as a hub of information for and about Hispanic Ohioans by hosting meetings, conducting surveys, promoting collaboration, encouraging communication, and endeavoring to assure access to decision-making bodies.

  • TO BUILD [Organizations Development Center] the capacity of Latino community organizations, especially those of, for, and by Hispanic Ohioans, by applying for and accepting grants in partnership with organizations, subcontracting programs to local groups, and conducting education programs to enhance and strengthen community organization staff and leadership.

Commission Scope

  • It clarifies the role of the Commission so that the people of Ohio can know what to expect from the Commission.

  • It also gives elected officials the assurance of having a trusted, reliable, and objective source of guidance on public policy matters affecting Hispanic Ohioans.

  • It directs the energy and resources of the Commission in a way that allows for the production of measurable results.

  • The Commission has a specific role that implicitly mandates strengthening grassroots private sector community organizations with the advice and counsel of grassroots leaders.