Originally covered by LA WEEKLY’s Dennis Romero

A new report from Hispanas Organized for Political Equality (HOPE) found that Latinas are bringing it when it comes to innovation and the building of businesses in the state of California. Is this a response to the wage gap? After all, nationally Latinas earn 43 cents to a white man’s dollar – the lowest on the spectrum of wage earning among women, and lower in Greater Los Angeles with 37 cents, according to HOPE! Large industries like that of entertainment in Los Angeles and technology in the Silicon Valley fuel the local and global economy, however Latinas tend to be far and in between on the higher earning scale in these spaces.

The “Economic Status of Latinas” report found that the number of Latina-owned businesses in California skyrocketed 111 percent since the beginning of the Great Recession in 2007.

Amazing findings from the HOPE report

  • U.S. Latinos saw an above-average income growth rate of 5.2 percent in 2015, an increase that surpassed that of other ethnic groups. Latinos also experienced a 2.2 percent reduction in their poverty rate that year.
  • More than eight out of 10 Latinas in California completed high school in 2015, a 6.9 percent increase in the graduation rate since 2011.
  • One in five people in California — and one in four in L.A. — is Latina.
  • It’s estimated that by 2060, one in four women in the United States will have Latino heritage.
  • Latino purchasing power in the United States in 2016 was worth $1.4 trillion; in California that figure is $359 billion. Both numbers were projected to continue to increase.

The bottom line according to HOPE’s executive director, Helen Torres – “We want to see Latina business owners get the support, the contracts, the capital…If they have access to those, we see them growing their businesses and hiring more people.”



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