University Hosts Latinx/Hispanic Heritage Month Discussion Series | Texas Tech Today

The series includes three virtual discussion panels with local experts who will speak about issues affecting the Latinx community.

Texas Tech University’s Latinx/Hispanic Heritage Month committee will launch a new virtual discussion series
today (Sept. 28). The series includes three discussion panels that will focus on issues
affecting the Latinx community: representation, health in the Latinx community and
immigration.

Making up the committee, sponsored by Dell Technologies, are members of several Latinx
student groups, including the Hispanic Student Society, Jolt and Unidos Por Un Mismo Idioma. The committee is chaired by Dalia Guerrero Villalobos, who serves as the Latinx
representative for the Texas Tech Student Intersectional Leadership Council.

“We decided on these topics because hosting one single conversation would not cover
the complexities of each topic, which have had an impact on the quality of life of
Latinxs in Texas and the United States,” said Guerrero Villalobos, a senior double
major in general studies and global studies. “Although others may enjoy our food, culture, music and people, it is important
to have these conversations because we need to acknowledge and educate ourselves about
the struggles and disparities that Latinx people from various walks of life face.
The more educated our community and others are, the faster the change will come.”

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The first discussion, “Latinx Representation,” will be at 5 p.m. today (Sept. 28)
and will include an introductory message from former Texas Rep. Beto O’Rourke. The
panelists are Jorge Iber, a history professor and associate dean of student affairs for College of Arts & Sciences; Christy Martinez, community organizer and Latino Lubbock publisher; and Judge Aurora Chaides-Hernandez, Lubbock Justice of the Peace – Precinct 3.

The panelists will discuss voting trends in the Latinx community, the importance of
completing the U.S. Census and debunking census misconceptions that limit Latinx participation;
population increases of Latinx people in Texas and the U.S.; and the importance of
community engagement. Attendance is free and open to the public. Attendees may join the discussion on Zoom using the Zoom ID 930 3210 5549.

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The second panel, “Health in the Latinx Community,” will take place on Oct. 5, and
will focus on the impact of COVID-19 in the Latinx community and the experience of
working in health care as a Latinx person. Panelists also will discuss mental health,
health care misconceptions, language disparities and lack of health insurance in the
Latinx community.

The final panel, “Immigration Issues Affecting the Latinx Community,” will be held
on Oct. 12. The panelists will discuss recent changes to immigration policies, conditions
in for-profit immigrant detention centers and how federal policy changes have affected
the Latinx community.
Panelists’ information and Zoom IDs will be shared for the second and third panels
at a later date.

“I hope people gain a new perspective after participating in these conversations,”
Villalobos said. “Although we might not immediately change mindsets or improve livelihoods,
we hope these conversations are continued on campus and in the city of Lubbock.”

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