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Minnesota Community Comes Together For COPAL MN’s Family Day

MINNEAPOLIS, MN – On Saturday, June 22nd, COPAL united the Minnesota Latine community by hosting Family Day at Longfellow Park in Minneapolis. The event brought together families from across the state to celebrate community and connection, recognize the organization’s recent achievements, and build a more inclusive Minnesota. 

“I’m a first-generation immigrant from Guatemala,” said Elvis Rivera, a COPAL member. “I came here when I was eight. At the time, there weren’t a lot of nonprofits or organizations doing the type of advocacy COPAL is doing. COPAL does great work. This community is number one. Community and power is why I chose to be involved and chose to be a member.”

COPAL has made significant strides towards supporting the Minnesota Latine community. The organization continued efforts to advocate for environmental justice and workers rights, broke ground on a new Latino Community Center in Minneapolis, and opened the doors of a new COPAL Southeast Office in Rochester. 

“COPAL’s presence is growing across Minnesota, allowing us to have an even greater impact on the state’s Latine community,” said Carolina Ortiz, COPAL’s associate executive director. “The Latino Center for Community Engagement and our new Rochester office will help our community build power and transform the systems that impact us most.”

In addition to these accomplishments, COPAL also earned major wins in this year’s legislative session. The organization helped pass the One Minnesota Economy bill, expanding the use of the Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) for rental and utility applications. The law increases opportunities for dignified housing and makes it easier for undocumented taxpayers to rent homes. COPAL also helped pass Tenant’s Right to Organize, which gives Minnesota renters legally protected pathways to organize for better living conditions and housing justice.

“Last year, when we passed the Child Tax Credit because of the advocacy of Latino organizations like COPAL, we were able to ensure that ITIN holders were able to have access to the Child Tax Credit,” said Migdalia Loyola, Deputy Chief Of Staff for Public Engagement with the office of Governor Tim Walz. “Fast forward to now, it is incredible that we can use the same arguments, the same advocacy, the same voice to ensure that ITIN holders who are renters have dignity in their renting and can access rental properties and their rights in a way that is dignified.”

Beyond the State Capitol, COPAL also helped secure the passage of resolutions for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Ecuador in Minneapolis, St. Paul and Columbia Heights City Councils. This is a significant step in the mission to grant temporary immigration relief to Ecuadorian Nationals living in the United States. Evelyn Sanchez, an Ecuadorian living in Minnesota and a member of the TPS Collective, thanked COPAL for its members’ work to make the resolutions possible.

“COPAL has opened the doors to us and has allowed our voice to be heard: the voice of the Ecuadorian community,” Sanchez said.  Family Day included music, food and games for the entire family to take part in. COPAL finished its program by encouraging community members to get involved and be a part of the organization’s growing success. With the community’s support, COPAL is confident it can continue its mission of building a more inclusive Minnesota.

COPAL Minnesota is an organization leading social impact initiatives that drive political, social, and economic changes to improve the lives of Latine families in Minnesota. For more information, please visit www.copalmn.org.

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