Latinos make up half of all New Mexicans and two out of five voters. These are the highest proportions for those categories in any state. But New Mexican Latinos tend to be independent, challenging orthodoxies about Latinos and party loyalties that play out in other places. Sarah Gustavus reports on the New Mexico difference.

Click here to download this week’s show. Image courtesy of Flickr.

Sarah Gustavus is an Albuquerque-based reporter who frequently covers immigration, public health, and politics. Her public radio stories have aired nationally on All Things Considered, Latino USA, Weekend America and Making Contact. As a 2011 Fellow with the Institute for Justice and Journalism’s Immigration in the Heartland program, she produced an award-winning series on New Mexico’s immigration history.


Two sisters from Minnesota who’ve migrated part-time to Texas share their views on immigration from Mexico. This is the second of two reports from the Rio Grande Valley about perspectives on immigration policy, produced by Maria Martin.

Click here to download this week’s show.

María Emilia Martin is a pioneering public radio journalist with over two dozen awards for her work covering Latino issues and Latin America. She started her career at the first community public radio station owned and operated by Latinos in the U.S. She has developed ground-breaking programs and series for public radio, including NPR’s Latino USA, and Despues de las Guerras: Central America After the Wars. A recipient of Fulbright and Knight Fellowships, she has extensive experience in journalism and radio training, in the U.S., Mexico, Guatemala, Bolivia and other countries.


The exhibit “Caribbean: Crossroads of the World” explores the complexities of art from the entire Caribbean region in an ambitious threemuseum collaboration in New York City with over 500 works spanning 400 years. Latino USA host Maria Hinojosa toured the Queens Museum site with lead curator Elvis Fuentes.

Click here to download this week’s show.

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The Supreme Court takes on a new Affirmative Action case, President Obama dedicates a new monument to civil rights leader Cesar Chavez, and Major League Baseball announces the All-Time Latino Team, with a couple of surprising entries. Victor Landa, editor of News Taco, fills us in on these and other most recent news.

Click here to download this week’s show.

Victor Landa is the founder and editor of NewsTaco, a website that provides news, analysis and critique from a Latino perspective. He worked as a writer and editor for 30 years, mostly with Telemundo and Univisión. Landa also contributed to the San Antonio Express-News, and he is an adviser on media strategy, message crafting, storytelling and public speaking.

Immigration News Picks: Latino Voters Might Swing Arizona, Utah Has Had Just 745 DACA Applicants

In Arizona, backlash against anti-immigration legislation SB 1070 could mean a major increase in Latinos voting for Democratic candidates. A Latino Decisions poll of Latino voters in Arizona finds that eighty percent would vote for Obama, while just fourteen percent said they would vote for Mitt Romney. This is in a state where Latino voters are much more enthusiastic about voting than the national average.

Speaking at the launch of the poll sponsored by America’s Voice, Rodolfo Espino, Associate Professor of Political Science at Arizona State University, explained the results:

“Latino voters in Arizona expressed frustration towards both political parties immediately following the passage of SB1070. As we head toward the 2012 Presidential election, the feelings of frustration by Latinos have tilted more against Republican candidates and enthusiasm for Democratic candidates has moved up. This has made the general elections in Arizona more competitive than many initially anticipated.”

Check out their interactive Latino Vote Map at and our conversation with a Latino Decisions analyst from last month about Latino candidates and their influence on Latino voting patterns.

While Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program or DACA has proven popular nationwide with 82,000 applicants in its first month, the response in Utah has been surprisingly small.

Marjorie Cortez, in the Deseret News reports:

“Fear of immigration officials is keeping young illegal immigrants away from the federal government’s deferred action program, with only 745 people applying in Utah during the first month of the program.”

Virginia, by comparison, had 1,954 applicants during the same time period, New York 6,637 and California 20,786. Cortez quotes Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff, a DACA supporter, saying that applications in his state are lower than anticipated due to uncertainty over the election. Republican candidate Mitt Romney has said he would repeal the program if he is elected.

Fi2W is supported by the New York Community Trust and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation with additional support from the Ralph E. Odgen Foundation and the Sirus Fund. Image courtesy of flickr.

Aaron Leaf is a freelance writer and editor who has reported on human rights issues from Zambia, Liberia, Canada and Peru. He is a graduate of Ryerson University and the former editor of Ricepaper, a journal of Asian Canadian arts and culture.

Bronx River Alliance park cleanup event

September 15, 2012 

Want to be part of a global day of cleaning up shorelines? Want to enjoy a fun day alongside America’s newest National Water Trail? Want to hang out with your friends, canoe, bike, and learn to hike? Join The Futuro Media Group and Latino USA to spend the day celebrating New York City nature and the Bronx River! 

Led by the Bronx River Alliance, Friends of Soundview Park, and Partnerships for Parks the Soundview Park clean up  is part of  International Coastal Cleanup Day – a global day of environmental stewardship – and is also a special celebration to recognize the Bronx River as a National Water Trail. The Coastal Clean Up in the Bronx removes debris along the waterfront where the Bronx River flows into the Long Island Sound.


The  Coastal Clean Up will be a fun day for the whole family. Besides improving the shoreline and water quality, the day’s activities include canoeing, biking, fishing demonstrations by I Fish NY, outdoor classes by REI stores in Soho and Yonkersand guided tours of the Soundview salt marsh wetlands area. Bikes and lunch are both provided and the event is free! Early birds can sign up to canoe into the park, leaving at 8:30 am (limited seats).

The park is a little tricky to get to and shuttles from the subway will be provided.

Registration required — limited to 100 volunteers:

Event details:

About the Radio Nature Series of The Futuro Media Group: The Bronx River has been reclaimed and restored to being a living urban ecosystem, and regular canoe tours show off the nature in the river, from fish to beavers. As part of our special series on Latinos and the environment, “RadioNature,” The Futuro Media Group took listeners on a journey down the Bronx River to learn about its restoration. Listen to this story here: Rowing Down the Bronx River (August 2011).

What to Wear: You will be cleaning up a natural area and could get wet and muddy! It is recommend to wear closed-toe sport sandals or old sneakers, lightweight pants or shorts of nylon or similar quick drying material (running pants, warm-ups, wind pants) and a light jacket or rain-jacket if the weather is questionable.

What to Bring: Sunglasses, a wide brim hat, sunscreen, bug repellent, bottle of water, and maybe a change of clothes.

The Radio Nature series and the Clean Up Day are sponsored by REI Foundation.





Who wins in November? Romney, Obama or Latinos? Find out Oct. 18


Thursday, October 18th
6-8pm | The New School

Latino voters are expected to play a pivotal role in the presidential election, just as they did in 2008. This town hall event will explore the tensions in the complex relationship that has evolved between the Latino electorate and the presidential candidates. Will economic concerns such as unemployment and housing foreclosures guide at the voting booth? Will the candidates’ immigration policies dominate? Or will large numbers of Latinos simply sit out this election? Understanding the political cross-currents buffeting Latinos today will provide valuable insight on the probable outcome of the election, as well as political and policy implications for the nation over the next four years.

Maria Hinojosa
 President, The Futuro Media Group
Jordan Fabian Political Editor, Univision News
Chung-Wha Hong Executive Director, New York Immigration Coalition
Mark Hugo Lopez Associate Director, Pew Hispanic Center
Fernand Amandi Partner, Bendixen and Amandi Intl.

In partnership with


Bronx River Revisited

As we look back at a year of Radio Nature, we go back to where it all started: the Bronx Rivera. Latino USA went out on a canoe ride with a group of volunteers cleaning up the riverbanks.


We end out look back at Radio Nature by talking to Andre Rivera, education specialist at the Bronx River Alliance, about how getting to know the river changed his life.

RadioNature is a year-long series that looks at how people of color connect with nature. Funding comes from the REI Foundation.


Click here to download this week’s show.



Planet New Mexico

Writer and musician Raquel Z. Rivera a New York native, tells us about making a home in a new and radically different place: the desert in the outskirts of Alburquerque. A place she calls “Planet New Mexico.”

RadioNature is a year-long series that looks at how people of color connect with nature. Funding comes from the REI Foundation.

Click here to download this week’s show.

Raquel Z. Rivera, Ph.D. is an author, scholar and singer-songwriter. She is co-editor of the anthology Reggaeton (2009) and author of New York Ricans from the Hip Hop Zone (2003). She blogs about her creative process at Cascabel de Cobre and about reggaeton and hip-hop at reggaetonica. A singer-songwriter, her debut CD Las 7 salves de La Magdalena / 7 Songs of Praise for the Magdalene was released in 2011. She has worked with the bomba group Alma Moyo, the Boricua roots music group Yerbabuena and Yaya, an all-women’s musical collective dedicated to Dominican salves and Puerto Rican bomba. She was born and raised in Puerto Rico and now lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico.






El Pastor Americano

As part of our ongoing REI series, Radio Nature, we take you to Southwest Colorado, where guest worker sheepherders are brought from Latin America to carry out one of the world’s toughest and oldest professions. Bolivian immigrant Eraclio Beltran is one of the nearly 300 Latin American shepherds in Colorado who spend months at a time in complete isolation, surrounded by the natural landscapes of the American West. Latino USA’s Andres Caballero reports from Colorado.


RadioNature is a year-long series that looks at how people of color connect with nature. Funding comes from the REI Foundation. This piece was produced by Andres Caballero and edited by Leda Hartman. Voice over work was done by Rosalino Ramos.


[audio:] Right-click here to download an .mp3 of this segment.

Click here to download this week’s show.



Andrés Caballero has been an active contributor to Latino USA for more than a year. He holds a M.S. in Journalism from the Columbia University School of Journalism, and a B.S. in Political Science from Notre Dame De Namur University. He covers issues that affect Latinos across the U.S., and he has also contributed to New America Media, the Hispanic Link News Service in Washington D.C., and El Tecolote in San Francisco.’