East Hampton Launches Latino Advisory Committee

East Hampton Town has formed a new Latino Advisory Committee to help provide outreach and translation of information about town services to the Spanish-speaking community in town.

The ten-member committee was formalized at the town’s Feb. 4 meeting.

“Over the last couple months, we’ve been talking about trying to find a way to better reach out to communicate with the Latino community in town, which is a significant part of the population here,” said Town Supervisor Larry Cantwell at the town’s Feb. 2 work session.

Mr. Cantwell said he envisions the committee will help to set up workshops on town services, beginning with a workshop for Spanish speakers on the town’s new rental registry.

About 350 people came to a series of workshops on the rental registry in late January, but those workshops were conducted entirely in English.

Mr. Cantwell said he hopes to also hold Spanish workshops on town clerk services and on interacting with the town’s justice court and police department.

Councilwoman Sylvia Overby, who is the liaison to the town’s Anti-Bias Task Force, said the task force is working on an open house at the town’s police department to try to bridge the gap between the police and the Latino community, and she’d welcome the new committee’s help in the process.

She added that there aren’t many Latino members of the task force, and they’d also like to do more to engage the town’s Latino community. The task force has recently put together a Spanish-language brochure about bias issues, but struggled to find someone to translate the brochure.

Councilwoman Kathee Burke-Gonzalez said she’s also realized, in working as a liaison to the town’s YMCA, that the town’s junior lifeguard program should be doing more to encourage Latino youth to join.

“One percent of junior lifeguards are of Latino heritage, but all kids go to the beach. Maybe there’s an opportunity there,” she said.

Committee members include Angela Quintero, Daniel Hartnett, Maritza Guichay, Isabel Saavedra, Diana Walker, Julio Aucapina, Blanca Bishop, Jamie Hernandez, Benjamin Zigua and Pastor Oswaldo Palomo.

Beth Young

Beth Young has been covering the East End since the 1990s. In her spare time, she runs around the block, tinkers with bicycles, tries not to drown in the Peconic Bay and hopes to grow the perfect tomato. You can send her a message at editor@eastendbeacon.com

One thought on “East Hampton Launches Latino Advisory Committee

  • March 18, 2016 at 12:10 pm

    I’m so disappointed in the Latino community
    When they feel entitled to special treatments.
    If we’re to go to fit instance El Salvador, first
    Off I would not ILLEGALLY sneak in. I would have to go through the system which is much more difficult than the American path to LEGAL Citizenship. Involving obviously background checks, reasons for coming, skills I have to be sure I am there to assimilate , not try and force
    My culture on a foreign country who is being kind enough to give me the opportunity to bring
    My skills, and become an El Salvadorian citizen ,
    Not an American living in El Salvador.
    I would before immigrating obviously learn the
    Language so I can further be a better person
    In my new country. I can not even imagine a group of Americans there forcing a town out of political correctness to cater to my needs by forming an American advisory group!
    I would already learn the language to at least show that I’m not there to change their culture
    But to be a productive part of it and work and contribute to the government by paying taxes, becoming a registered voter , I would never ask
    My country to change because my parents refuse
    To teach me Spanish ! And would never imagine asking my new host country whose already near 17 trillion dollars in debt to personally
    Cater to me by spending money thru do not have to start making signs specifically for me in
    My native language … That is what’s known as the exact opposite of trying to assimilate . To me that’s outlandishly insulting , and counter productive to being a good citizen.
    It is not Americas fault that you illegally snuck into our country , you did that by choice,
    It’s nobodies fault but your own that you are too lazy to learn the language of the country that you now illegally reside in, take advantage of being a minority when and if you choose to pay any taxes at all. Ignorant to the fact that all the while your taking away a job from a legal citizen , who pays taxes, speaks the language, and never asks what the country he or she resides in can do for them, but what
    They can do for their country!
    I’m suck and tired of going to a supermarket and asking five workers for band aids and getting the blank stare and a muted no English .
    How much more offended can I feel knowing
    Those five workers too lazy to learn the language of the country their taking money from aren’t even trying to assimilate .
    Stop with the insanity !


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