UnidosUS Reacts to Revised California Budget

SACRAMENTO, CA— Governor Newsom released his revised budget plan last Friday.  Housing and education serve as the two pillars that are inextricably linked to the Latino community’s prosperity.

The Governor’s budget is a good downpayment on addressing these priorities for our community, but more leadership is needed to unlock the hidden potential within each Latino student and utilizing homeownership as the vehicle to achieve economic stability our community deserves. 

Esmeralda López UnidosUS California State Director, Policy and Advocacy issued the following statement in response to the Governor’s education and housing investments: 

“UnidosUS is disappointed to see inadequate investments to increase housing supply and access to homeownership. While it is good to see some investments, decades of underproduction cannot be remedied without more significant budgetary investments. No real solution is provided for one of the most pressing issues facing the Latino community, housing affordability. Too many Latinos are facing a disproportionate amount of housing insecurity. 57% of Latino renters are financially strained by their housing costs, limiting their ability to secure their economic future, including homeownership.  The homeownership gap between Latinos and whites is 14% and will persist without serious government intervention. The May revision did not reverse the cuts made to the CalHome and California Dream for All Programs and included a $345 million deferral for Foreclosure Intervention Housing Prevention Program.  Governor Newsom has called housing a fundamental human need. We need to act now to address the state’s housing affordability crisis and ensure investments reflect the importance and urgency of this crisis. 

“On education, UnidosUS commends the Governor’s continued commitment to making a more equitable education system that supports Latino and English Learner students from cradle-to-career. We applaud the Governor’s support for our most vulnerable students, including multilingual students, through the Bilingual Teacher Professional Development Program, and ensuring the Golden State Teacher Grant Program. 

“UnidosUS strongly calls for commitment to addressing the repercussions of the pandemic including issuing immediate support for our K-12 and higher education systems. State leaders should continue to prioritize investments such as the Learning Recovery Emergency Block Grant and California Community College efforts to increase enrollment and retention. We also urge state leaders to look ahead and uphold their promise to Cal Grant Reform, which is on hold until 2024, to ensure vulnerable students can access sufficient adequate financial aid.   

“As we enter the homestretch of deciding the state budget, we must remember that investments in our education system, building affordable housing and increasing access to homeownership will help Latinos, and other vulnerable groups, achieve economic success therefore growing the financial prosperity of the entire state of California.”