Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, our civic engagement activities for 2020 were postponed, including the annual VLLC Working Meeting with the Governor. Throughout the pandemic, we have been focused on advocating for increased support for our Latino community. Our first activity in 2021, the traditional Annual Working Meeting with the Governor is detailed below. As we proceed through 2021, we plan for virtual civic engagement opportunities. For a full list of our past activities, please see our Events and Photos page.
VLLC Hosts 2021
Traditional Annual Working Meeting with the Governor
On Wednesday, April 14, 2021, VLLC hosted our Annual Working Meeting with Virginia Governor Ralph Northam to discuss current issues of concern to the Latino community. Unfortunately this traditional meeting was cancelled last year due to the pandemic, and we were thrilled this year to continue our conversation virtually. We met with the governor and high level staff, including representatives from the Virginia Secretary of the Commonwealth, the Virginia Secretary of Education, the Virginia Department of Health, and staff from the governor’s office. Along with VLLC members, our invited presenters this year included representatives of the Virginia Latino Advisory Board (VLAB), Virginia Coalition for Immigrant Rights (VACIR), and the Virginia Coalition of Latino Organizations (VACOLAO). Topics highlighted the limited access to the COVID vaccine for Latino and immigrant communities; challenges to obtaining Driver’s Privilege Cards; equitable educational opportunities for Latinos and immigrants; the absence of high-level Latino staff in the current administration, and others.
During the meeting we appreciated that Governor Northam was engaged from beginning to end with Virginia’s Latino leaders. He listened carefully to our concerns, provided quality feedback, and promised follow up. The participants agreed that quality followup with the appropriate staff will be critical to successful outcomes.
VLLC will continue to engage with high level public officials as part of our mission to promote the well-being of the Latino community. We seek to ensure that the concerns of our community are heard and understood, and that we work towards solutions.
(Photo credit: Karina Kline-Gabel/Paul Berry)