NEW YORK – On Wednesday, Sept. 2, in Hauppauge, NY, the Southern Poverty Law Center, or SPLC, will release a report showing that Latino immigrants in Suffolk County, NY, are routinely the target of violent attacks, harassment and abuse driven by a virulent anti-immigrant climate that spans a decade.
Ten months ago, the country was shocked by the brutal murder of Ecuadorian immigrant Marcelo Lucero, who was beaten and stabbed by a group of teenagers who were out “beaner-jumping” on the streets of Patchogue. This new report "Climate of Fear: Latino Immigrants in Suffolk County, N.Y." documents numerous other hate crimes against Latinos in the community and describes a volatile, anti-immigrant environment fostered by some community leaders. SPLC researchers spent months on the ground interviewing Latino immigrants, local religious leaders and small business owners for the report. They found a pervasive climate of fear in the Latino community.
A bilingual hotline –(800) 328-2322– has been set up by LatinoJustice-PRLDEF to take calls from victims and witnesses of crimes, especially hate crimes, on Long Island against Latinos. Callers will be given advice and direct assistance if needed. All information will be confidential.
Mark Potok, Director, SPLC Intelligence Project
Henry Fernandez, Senior Fellow, Center for American Progress
Phil Ramos, New York State Assemblyman
Anthony Miranda, Executive Chairman, National Latino Officers Association of America
Sister Margaret Smyth, North Fork Spanish Apostolate
WHAT: News conference to discuss new report, "Climate of Fear: Latino Immigrants in Suffolk County, N.Y."
WHEN: 10:30 a.m. ET, Wednesday, Sept. 2
WHERE: H. Lee Dennison Building, Media Room, 100 Veterans Memorial Highway, Hauppauge, NY
For an embargoed copy of the report, please contact Booth Gunter at number above.
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The Southern Poverty Law Center, based in Montgomery, Ala., is a nonprofit civil rights organization that combats hate and discrimination. For more information, visit www.splcenter.org.