Latinas and Financial Literacy (part 2)

with Amy Hinojosa of MANA, A National Latina Organization

National Economy and Business

About 1 in 5 women in the U.S. today is Hispanic with projected growth to 1 in 3 by the year 2060. While recent statistics have shown that the gender wage gap in the U.S. has improved, Latinas remain on the lower end of the pay spectrum.

Amy Hinojosa, President and CEO of MANA, A National Latina Organization discusses the role of financial literacy in empowering Hispanic women.  Click here for part 1 of Latinas and Financial Literacy.

Interview recorded Sept 6, 2017.  Hosted by Robert Traynham.  Part 2 of 2.

Read a partial transcript of this interview below:

Traynham: So, why do you think women, and quite frankly, other minorities feel like, I don´t have a voice, or I can´t speak up? Is it respect for authority? Is it the fact that they´re afraid they may get fired, or —

Hinojosa: In many cases, it´s respect for authority. It´s also in many cases, they just don´t want to jeopardize the job that they´ve got, jeopardize their family lives in the process of trying to make a point, which is one of the reasons why we at MANA, in addition to the community education piece, we also advocate at federal, state, and local levels to work with whether it´s corporations, whether it´s the local government, to really look at why this is happening and how we can fix it.

Traynham: Any other programs that you´re working on, Amy?

Hinojosa: In financial literacy wise?

Traynham: Yes.

Hinojosa: We have started this year a really great financial literacy program for youth, the financial services round table has worked with us to develop a curriculum that is specific to youth and helps them start on the path.

Traynham: So it´s planting that seed very, very early which hopefully will create a path of financial independence and literacy for the rest of their lives.

Hinojosa: Absolutely, because what we´re finding right now, one in five Latinas is living in poverty over the age of 65. And so we find that the earlier we can start folks on a path of financial literacy and security earlier in life, the better off they´re gonna be throughout.

Traynham: Amy, I´m projecting here a minute, so please correct me if I´m wrong. Is it the fact that in the Latina community and Latino community specifically, it´s so family-centric that perhaps maybe they don´t ask for help outside the family? Is that partly it? Is it the fact that we need to raise the awareness overall so that it gets into the community? In other words, why is there a bit of a disconnect here?

Hinojosa: So I think that it´s about finding safe spaces for information, and that´s one of the things that we´re most proud of at MANA is being able to provide a stable, safe space to get safe information, accurate information, and to share that with your neighbors and friends.

Traynham: You mentioned something. When you say safe information, what do you mean by that?

Hinojosa: Well, I think that we´re in an environment where it´s very easy to get taken advantage of by fraudulent companies that are promising you the world in exchange for your “building a business.”

Traynham: Yeah.

Hinojosa: And that´s something that speaks very much to the Hispanic community and the entrepreneurial spirit.

Traynham: You know, it´s funny you say that because we see that a lot in the black community, inner cities where it´s predatory loaning and lending, rather, and it´s this payday loans and so forth. They´re really preying on the most vulnerable in our society that live paycheck to paycheck. So I´m glad to hear you say the safe learning and safe environment where people can get information.

Hinojosa: And we´re a community that relies on family and community to get us through. And so if we can be that source of information, that´s where we want to be.

Traynham: Amy, speaking of source of information, the folks that are watching at home or perhaps maybe on their smart device, where can they get information? Where can they go to get the safe information to empower themselves and their families?

Hinojosa: They can absolutely come to our website at www.hermana.org. That´s H-E-R-M-A-N-A dot O-R-G.

Traynham: Amy, thank you very much for joining us, I really appreciate it.

Hinojosa: Thank you.

Traynham: And thank you, of course, for joining us, as well. For more great conversations with leaders in your community and across the nation, visit comcastnewsmakers.com. I´m Robert Traynham.