In early September, Illinois Unidos and the Latino Policy Forum will offer a two-part advocacy training to Illinois Unidos members. Two training sessions will help IU members grow their knowledge, increase their understanding of the parameters for nonprofit advocacy, and support their preparation for advocacy efforts when reaching out to elected officials and public leaders.
The backbone of the state’s economy are industries with visible Latino participation as essential workers. These industries include food and beverage, agriculture, hospitality, construction, and others. The state’s economy would shatter without the muscle, and labor of essential and low-wage workers.
Addressing workplace conditions to protect workers’ health — and underpin safety standards — requires sharing the stories of workers and others with first-hand experiences. Illinois Unidos believes this is one way of bringing awareness to the health and safety of the state’s workforce. Encouraging public officials and legislators to listen to these stories can seed public policy actions and legislative solutions. And preparing community residents to speak to leaders and decision-makers is at the core of the advocacy training being offered.
Ultimately, Illinois can regain its regional financial footing by first ensuring all workers’ health and safety, especially essential, low-wage, and immigrant workers.