Janurary 2010 CHLA Minutes

Commission on Hispanic and Latino Affairs

January 6, 2010

5:30 PM, McCloskey Conference Room

Present: Lillian Casillas, Raquel Anderson, Christina Courtright, Pat Marvin, Gracia Valliant and Melissa Britton

  1. Call to Order
  2. December minutes approved
  3. Commission appointments: Mayoral appointments require that the Mayor's office be notified if one is interested in serving on the Commission or if one wants to be reappointed. If Commissioners have suggestions, please let Melissa or Raquel know.
  4. Web Page Update: Melissa reported that the recognition page will be up in a few days with Prof. Aquinis as the first person recognized.

5. Emergency fund: There is a gap in community resources for undocumented residents who need emergency financial assistance for rent and utilities. Melissa gave a presentation on the resources available in the community for those who do not have documentation: Vectren, Duke payment plans, Shalom Center, Monroe County United Ministries. MCUM accepts applications for emergency assistance year round, but during the months of October-May they require extra documentation. In order to qualify the applicant must first have statements from the Township Trustee and SCCAP denying help. Applications have to be in English. The Commission might want to look at assuring that there are translations and interpreters to support applications. Melissa will follow up with Cliff Edens from MCUM to clarify this information and report back to the Commission at the February meeting.

Other thoughts: What do we want the Emergency Fund to cover? Should it fill in the gaps for utilities? How do we raise the money for the fund? An event, sell something? How much is needed?

6. Awards-we have a template from other commissions. Awards will be discussed at the February meeting. At that time we will discuss what the award will look like, criteria and when and where it will be presented.

7. Pat and Christina will work on the business model for trained community interpreters. Lillian will help.

8. Melissa passed out copies of The Safety Net. The Commission might want to submit an article. What should the topic be-the need for interpreters? El Centro should be included in the list of agencies.

9. Juan Carlos will write a report to the Mayor outlining the Commission's work over the last year.

Respectfully submitted,

Gracia Valliant