While the 2024 Republican Presidential candidates (with the exception of former President Donald Trump) prepare for the first debate where they will voice their opinions on immigration among other hot topics, Democrat Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon held an open-to-all town hall meeting for Spanish speakers on Monday.
Wyden’s move essentially means that speaking English is no longer a requirement for being heard by U.S. government representatives.
Wyden says he is “proud to be the first member of Oregon’s Congressional Delegation” to host such an event. He also thanked Comunidades & La Clinica “for helping to shorten the distance between Oregon and D.C. for the Spanish speaking community.”
Proud to be the first member of Oregon’s Congressional Delegation to host an open-to-all town hall meeting in Oregon for Spanish speakers. Big thanks to Comunidades & La Clinica for helping to shorten the distance between Oregon and D.C for the Spanish speaking community. pic.twitter.com/NFr4pdqsSK— Ron Wyden (@RonWyden) August 21, 2023
During the recent heat wave in Oregon, Wyden reposted announcements in Spanish warning residents of the risks of extreme heat and how to stay cool — the state has been offering “extreme heat cooling stations” during days of 100+ degree temperatures.
¡Hoy va a hacer mucho CALOR! Si necesita un espacio para refrescarse, visite uno de los centros de Corvallis y del Condado de Benton ubicados en: https://t.co/UELGJvEKhl— Benton County, Oregon (@BentonCoGov) August 14, 2023
The Seattle Times reports that Oregon’s Latino population jumped by 144% from 1990 to 2000 and grew by another 63% from 2000 to 2010. As of 2022, Oregon’s Latino population is 588,757 and “has grown faster than the national rate in each of the last three decades.”
Latinos are now the largest minority group in the state, accounting for nearly 14% of the state’s population.
According to the 2019 American Community Survey, approximately 40% of Oregon Latinos were born in the state; 28% were born elsewhere in the U.S.; and roughly 30% were born in other countries.