The Hispanic Institute

Digital Divide Dampens Hispanic Impact in the U.S.


WASHINGTON, D.C. March 18, 2015 -- Hispanics lack adequate access to broadband Internet -- and it's preventing them from matching the economic, educational, and healthcare outcomes of their peers in other ethnic groups, according to a study released today by The Hispanic Institute.

"Without reliable access to the Internet, Hispanics cannot participate fully in American society," said Gus West, President of The Hispanic Institute. "The best job and educational opportunities have moved online. If Hispanics are to take advantage of them, they'll need to follow them into cyberspace."

According to the study, digital engagement is correlated with higher levels of education. Ninety-one percent of Hispanic families with some college use the Internet, compared with 58 percent of those with less than a high school diploma. The latter group's low educational attainment already impedes their employment prospects. A lack of Internet access exacerbates those woes.

The digital divide also hamstrings Hispanics' ability to secure health coverage. The Affordable Care Act's subsidized insurance is only available through Meanwhile, many Hispanics believe that they could be deported if they sign up for coverage through the ACA's exchanges. Combine those two factors, and it's no wonder that nearly 30 percent of Hispanics are uninsured.

"A viable Internet connection remains one of the best ways to secure a step forward in this country," said West. "If Hispanics are to catch up to the economic, educational, and healthcare achievements of their peers, policymakers and the telecommunications industry must take steps to expand Internet access in Hispanic communities."


For more information or to download a copy of "Telecommunications and Hispanics: How Technology can Advance Latino Interests via Education, Health Care and the Economy," please go to or contact XiNomara Velazquez at (202) 544-8284 or

About The Hispanic Institute

The Hispanic Institute is a 501 (c)(3) designated nonprofit organization that provides an effective education forum for an informed and empowered Hispanic America. The Hispanic Institute manages a number of projects including, studies of Hispanic economic contributions, media monitoring, consumer fraud and citizenship education. For more information, please visit

Read the Full Document (PDF)

The Hispanic Institute's Statement on President Barack Obama's Executive Order on Immigration Policy

For Immediate Release

We are more than pleased that the President has taken this incremental move toward fairness and justice in immigration policy.  While we hoped this administration would have acted much earlier, thus sparing pain for countless hard-working families who were dedicated to helping this nation and its residents make a better life, we applaud his determination and encourage him in the battle that lies ahead.

In that vein we welcome the dialogue that this action will provoke.  But let us not forget that in terms of constitutional authority this administration has already used executive power to deport two million undocumented immigrants.  The Republican opposition will not talk about those deportations because it demonstrates that the President has already done exactly what they have asked.  This executive action is a sorely needed corrective measure.

We expect that the order will arouse some not-so-kind sentiments towards immigrants.  However, in the end we believe "better angels" will prevail.

Contact: XiNomara Velazquez: (202) 544-8294

Gus West: Immigration Not a Crisis, It's An Opportunity

-- from the Sun Sentinel (Florida) :

Concern about immigration recently tripled, thanks largely to the surge of unaccompanied minors across the nation's southern border, according to the latest Gallup poll. Yet Congress is hopelessly deadlocked over what to do.

Republican leaders have deferred to the most anti-immigrant members of their caucus — who are effectively calling for mass deportations. Democrats, meanwhile, have refused to even discuss immigration until after this fall's election.

This political gamesmanship must end. Our leaders must welcome the immigrants who have made their way here — not just for humanitarian reasons but for economic ones, too.

Since last October, nearly 60,000 unaccompanied immigrant children have entered the United States from Mexico. Most are fleeing Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador — three nations wracked by unthinkable levels of gang violence and poverty.

The IHC Group Launches Aspira A Más

The IHC Group Launches Aspira A Más, Dedicated to Serving Hispanic Communities and Creating Health Insurance Career Opportunities

New Initiative Kicks-Off in Miami and Phoenix with Endorsement from The Hispanic Institute and Celebrity Spokesperson Cynthia Olavarria

Stamford, CT, June 11, 2015 – Independence Holding Company (NYSE:IHC) (“IHC”) today announced the formation of a new sales and marketing division called Aspira A Más, which will create professional career opportunities for Hispanics and will provide much needed major medical and ancillary health insurance products to Latinos living in the United States.  

Initially, Aspira A Más will focus on recruiting advisors as well as offering insurance solutions to consumers in Miami and Phoenix, but will soon expand its outreach to Hispanic communities in many other metropolitan areas, including San Antonio, Dallas, Houston, Las Vegas and Chicago. 

IHC also revealed that it has signed Cynthia Olavarria, star of Tierra de Reyes and a former Miss Puerto Rico, to be its spokesperson in a comprehensive social media and digital marketing campaign in conjunction with Telemundo television stations in the two target cities.

The Hispanic Institute, a leading Hispanic American empowerment organization headquartered in Washington D.C., has also recently endorsed Aspira A Más for its efforts to create career opportunities and provide low-cost valuable supplemental health plans, including dental, vision, accident medical, critical illness, short-term medical, as well as advising on ObamaCare plans...

Read the Full Document [PDF]

The IHC Group Lanza Su División Aspira A Más

The IHC Group lanza su división Aspira A Más, dedicada a atender a la comunidad hispana y a crear oportunidades profesionales en el ámbito de los seguros de salud

Esta nueva iniciativa avalada por The Hispanic Institute se inaugura en Miami y en Phoenix con la famosa Cynthia Olavarría como portavoz

Stamford, CT, 11 de junio de 2015 – Independence Holding Company (NYSE:IHC) (“IHC”) anunció hoy la creación de una nueva división de ventas y mercadeo llamada Aspira A Más que generará oportunidades profesionales para los hispanos y ofrecerá productos de seguro médico y planes auxiliares que tanto necesitan los hispanos residentes en los Estados Unidos.  

En un principio, Aspira A Más concentrará sus esfuerzos en contratar asesores, así como también en ofrecer soluciones de seguro para los consumidores de Miami y Phoenix, pero pronto ampliará su radio de acción a las comunidades hispanas de muchas de las principales zonas metropolitanas, incluyendo San Antonio, Dallas, Houston, Las Vegas y Chicago.  

IHC también reveló que ha firmado un contrato con Cynthia Olavarría, protagonista de «Tierra de Reyes» y ex Miss Puerto Rico, para que sea su portavoz en una extensa campaña de mercadeo digital y en las redes sociales, conjuntamente con las estaciones de la cadena Telemundo, en las dos ciudades inaugurales.

The Hispanic Institute, una organización líder dedicada al fortalecimiento de la población hispana estadounidense, con sede en Washington D.C., avaló recientemente la iniciativa de Aspira A Más de crear oportunidades profesionales y ofrecer valiosos planes de salud suplementarios y a bajo costo, entre los que se encuentran seguros dentales, para optometría, seguros en caso de accidente, de enfermedad crítica o para cubrir gastos médicos a corto plazo, así como también brindar orientación en cuanto a los planes según la Ley de Cuidado de Salud a Bajo Costo, también conocida como «Obamacare».

Lea el documento completo [PDF]

The Hispanic Institute Launches Bilingual PSA for Get-Out-The-Vote Campaign

The key to reaching Hispanic voters? Speak both their languages!

WASHINGTON, D.C. (September 22) -- Today, The Hispanic Institute launched a bilingual public service announcement video encouraging Hispanics to vote in this November's midterm elections. The video -- which transitions seamlessly between English and Spanish -- is part of the Institute's 2014 Get-Out-The-Vote campaign.

Our Responsibility to Vote! from Aalia Network on Vimeo.

"America's 54 million Hispanics owe it to themselves and their families to make their voices heard at the polls this November," said Gus West, Board Chair of The Hispanic Institute. "Our video appeals to Hispanic Americans' sense of civic duty -- whatever their preferred language may be."

Historically, Hispanics have been under-represented politically. That's largely because they've voted at rates 25 percent lower than blacks and whites.

The Hispanic Institute's video aims to change that. And reaching Hispanics requires bilingual outreach. The U.S. Census Bureau predicts the use of Spanish as the primary language will decrease among Hispanics in the coming years. Already, a quarter of Hispanic Americans speak only English at home.

The Hispanic Institute is looking to air its Get-Out-The-Vote video in five states with the most competitive elections this fall: Nevada, Colorado, North Carolina, Georgia, and Iowa.

"With the mid-term elections just six weeks away, Hispanics have a historic chance to influence policy on the issues that matter most to them," said West. "Our campaign will call on them to seize that opportunity."


The Five U.S. Cities With the Most Educated Latinos

-- by Janie Boschma, National Journal:

Overall, educational-attainment rates for Latinos are far behind where they need to be, especially considering their projected growth as a share of the workforce and the growing demand for postsecondary training.

Bernie Sanders to Join Latino Leaders at NALEO Conference in Las Vegas

-- by Rodrigo Ugarte, Latin Post:

Democratic contender, Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, will speak at next week's Latino leaders conference, joining Hillary Clinton at the event. Sen. Sanders has faced some backlash for not mentioning immigration and Latinos' plight in his campaign rhetoric.


Netflix Beefs Up Its U.S. Hispanic Content

-- by Darah Hansen, Stream Daily:

Beginning this month, Netflix will offer a more robust selection of Hispanic titles to its U.S. subscribers, ranging from original series, tele-series and novelas, to kids shows, comedies, documentaries and movies as a result of expanded partnerships with leading broadcasters Univision, UniMas, Telemundo and others.

Are Latino Teens Using Smartphones Too Much?

-- by By Keerthi Chandrashekar, Latin Post:

Are Hispanic teens using smartphones too much? A recent Pew Study has one psychologist wondering if overuse of smartphones might be widening, not closing, the education gap.

The new Pew study shows that 71 percent of Hispanic teens have access to a smartphone, the same as white teens but lower than the 85 percent of African-American teens, and that 32 percent of Hispanic teens go online "almost constantly." The numbers are among the highest in demographics. Roughly 34 percent of African-Americans are online "almost constantly" and only 19 percent of white teens "go online that often."

"The transformation of the cell phone into a media content delivery platform... [has] facilitated an explosion in [recreationally-based] media consumption among American youth," reads a Kaiser Family Foundation report.

Could this smartphone usage be contributing to the education gap displayed between Hispanics and other demographics?

Read More


Louisiana: "Marriage Fraud" Bill Targeting Undocumented Immigrants Approved by Lawmakers

-- by Tim Marcin, The International Business Times:

A bill designed to keep undocumented immigrants from getting married in Louisiana earned final approval from lawmakers on Wednesday. The state House and Senate both approved the bill that has been sent to Republican Gov. Bobby Jindal for consideration.

Justice Dept: Palm Beach County (FL) Schools Make It Hard for Immigrants to Enroll

-- by Karen Yi, The Sun-Sentinel:

The Palm Beach County school district has failed to eliminate some discriminatory practices that make it difficult for immigrant students to enroll, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

In a 2013 settlement, the district vowed to better welcome immigrant students after two teenagers were unable to register at a high school because their parents did not have documentation.

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