Provided by Alex Sarabia

Congressman Joaquin Castro (TX-20) released the following statement to mark the start of Hispanic Heritage Month:

“Hispanic Heritage Month is an important moment to celebrate the immense contributions of Latinos to the prosperity of the United States. This country is a nation of and built by Latinos. Since the very beginning, Latinos have played an instrumental role in shaping American society through entrepreneurship, public service, and more. Throughout this pandemic, the powerful spirit and unwavering commitment of Latino workers have greatly benefited all Americans — as essential workers, they have kept families healthy, safe and fed.”

“My hometown of San Antonio is a quintessential example of Latino contributions to the United States. I am very proud of the San Antonio community’s legacy of standing up for civil rights, voting rights, equal opportunity, and the fair representation of Latinos in Texas and nationwide. It was in San Antonio where institutions like the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund were founded. It was in San Antonio where students and parents pushed for equitable school funding in SAISD v. Rodriguez, and while they were ultimately unsuccessful at the Supreme Court, they inspired state lawmakers to reform public school finance. And I’m confident that it will be in San Antonio where future Latino leaders will continue to fight for the wellbeing and improvement of Latinos across the United States.

“As we use this month to also reflect on the unique challenges Latino communities face, President Biden and Congress remain committed to Building Back Better and delivering for Latino families. Lowering the cost of health care, prescriptions, child care, housing, and higher education, cutting taxes for working- and middle-class families, and creating millions of good-paying jobs in the industries of the future will improve the lives of Latinos for generations. Congress must act with urgency to deliver progress — including a long overdue pathway to citizenship for Dreamers, TPS holders, farmworkers, and millions of essential workers.”

“For far too long, Latinos have been excluded from the image-defining and narrative-creating institutions of American society. From film and television to books and news, Latinos are not fully reflected and woefully underrepresented in the media industry. I am working hard with my colleagues in the Congressional Hispanic Caucus and state lawmakers across the country to address this systemic exclusion and empower Latinos to tell our stories. In the years to come, I hope the contributions of Latinos grow in recognition and our strides in economic and social justice are matched with an appreciation of Latino cultural advancement.”