Various initiatives have been under active discussion at CHisPA and Progreso Latino inresponse to the need for a greater institutional involvement in the development of information about the Latino community that will influence policy makers. A search for the particular niche which policy institute could fill in service to local government, business and nonprofit service delivery organizations, has focused on the development of community leaders capable of breaking down barriers and changing perceptions in their own backyards. In addition to providing valuable community learning experiences andapplied research opportunities for members of the Latino community, the idea of establishing a public policy institute committed to empowering Latino stakeholders toactually implement change has taken hold at the Center for Hispanic Policy & Advocacyduring the last year.Specifically, a
Latino Policy Institute
that fully engages the interests and energies of community-based organizations and their representatives in the identification of researchtopics and resulting policy recommendations is proposed here. Additionally, the further commitment to empower community participants with the requisite skills to effectivelyadvocate and implement change in government and private solutions to Latino problems.The following narrative describes the core philosophy behind the Latino Policy Institute,the operating strategy and budget implications of this initiative, and finally, anunderwriting profile which identifies the unique community participation objectivesserved by this undertaking.
The Latino Policy Institute will be a freestanding, policy research organization which will be destined to attain a reputation as the Rhode Island's "premier Latino think tank."Through its strong capacity to conduct primary and secondary data analysis, The LatinoPolicy Institute will be uniquely position to fill the void in information that exists among policymakers and political leaders regarding the complexities that characterize the Latino population--e.g. It’s heterogeneous composition, its bilingualism, and its diverse nativity.The Latino Policy Institute will analyze issues of concern to Latinos, acts as a liaison tothe RI Legislature, the U. S. Congress and federal agencies, conducts seminars andstudies on topical issues, presents testimony to local governments and develops workingrelationships with other advocacy groups.The institute will prepare reports on issues that have an impact upon the social, economicand political well being of Latinos in Rhode Island and the mainland United States. Italso will conduct analysis on public policies and legislative proposals in order toempower Progreso Latino and CHisPA's constituency to participate in the formulation of public policies.3