Thursday, July 18, 2024

Why counting Latinos in small town USA matters

Posted by Elena del Valle on February 3, 2010

By Josh Norek

Josh Norek, deputy director, Voto Latino

Photo: Josh Norek

My wife – a first generation Salvadoran-American attorney who grew up in some of the roughest areas of Los Angeles – once described part of my nearby hometown of Albany, NY as “the scariest place I’ve ever been.” When a girl from East LA thinks Albany is the most dangerous city in America, you know upstate New York has a problem.

Make no mistake: upstate New York is a microcosm of America’s Rust Belt and agricultural communities. As manufacturing and farming declined upstate, so did the area cities’ populations and their corresponding tax bases: in the Capital District region, Albany’s population dropped by 29%, Schenectady’s by 32% and Amsterdam’s by a staggering 43% between 1950 and 2000. Had Latino immigrants not moved to these small cities in the past two decades, the population losses would have been far higher.

Click here to read the complete article.

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