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LULAC focuses on more opportunities for Latinos

Reported by: Sergio Avila
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Updated: 6/18/2013 11:01 pm
LAS VEGAS (KSNV & MyNews3) -- The valley is home to nearly 200,000 Latinos making it one of the fastest growing Hispanic communities in the country.

That's one of the reasons why the League of United Latin American Citizens is hosting their annual conference in Las Vegas.

This week, their focus will be on creating more opportunities for Latinos within the federal government.

News 3's Sergio Avila explains the strategy that starts with valley youth.

When construction jobs dried up the Hispanic community was disproportionately affected because of the sheer number of Hispanics in the industry.

The league of United Latin American Citizens is trying to diversify that number by training Latinos to become leaders within the federal government.

The Latino community in Clark County predominately works in fields like construction and the service industry.

LULAC's national executive director wants more higher-paying opportunities for Latinos, especially in the federal workforce.

“When you look at the statistics overall we're 8 percent of the federal workforce but when you look at the Latino population, we're 16 percent of the Latino population,” said LULAC’s National Executive Director Brent Wilkes.

LULAC's program called the Federal Training Institute helps Latinos already working for the government gain the skills to grow in their fields.

Sara Clemente Sosa is one of those who work to get more Latinos in to federal positions.

“As you know the federal government makes a lot of decisions that affect the Latino community so we believe we have to have Latinos in those leadership positions,” Sosa said.

It's not just government employees their program targets, they also aim at Latino youth.

Clemente brings in Latino leaders that connect with high school and college-aged students. Showing them, their cultural background shouldn't hold them down.

“When I look at someone and say wow, he or she has my background and he talks Spanish like I do, he looks like me. He's Latino, so I have an opportunity too,” Sosa said.

This training offers up internship and career opportunities within the federal government for young adults.

The idea is to give students higher aspirations for their futures with the hopes of creating more diversity within the federal government.

The federal training institute and it is free, all you have to do is check the schedule on LULAC's website.
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