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The Latino Economic Development Center is doing what it can to help Latinx and Black business owners reach their full potential despite the setbacks the COVID-19 pandemic has caused. 

The District has a robust and diverse Latinx population. Nearly 80,000 people or 11.3 percent of the city’s population identify as “Hispanic or Latino,” according to 2019 Census data. Yet LEDC is one of few organizations in the District that offers bilingual programming for entrepreneurs. (Life Asset is another.) 

“It’s so hard when you’re trying to learn something in this other language,” Joan Bonilla explains. He runs Quick Catering Services and recently received training from LEDC. “You don’t get everything 100 percent. It’s very, very special, the LEDC teaching in our language.” 

Latinx-owned businesses are a key driver of the American economy. A 2019 Stanford University study found that the number of new Latinx-owned businesses continues to outpace the U.S. average.

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For T. Strong, recently opening her Newark shoe store was a dream. But she had some obstacles filling out confusing government applications.



Ras Baraka wearing a suit and tie: Newark Mayor Ras Baraka speaks. Governor Murphy, Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo, Newark Mayor Ras Baraka and other officials held a press conference to announce a partnership between Newark and Essex County to fund $120 Million to expedite the complete replacement of lead water pipes. Newark, NJ. Monday, August 26, 2019.


© David Gard | For NJ Advance Media/David Gard | For NJ Advance Media/nj.com/TNS
Newark Mayor Ras Baraka speaks. Governor Murphy, Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo, Newark Mayor Ras Baraka and other officials held a press conference to announce a partnership between Newark and Essex County to fund $120 Million to expedite the complete replacement of lead water pipes. Newark, NJ. Monday, August 26, 2019.

So she turned to Invest Newark for help, a nonprofit that helps companies acquire capital and also operates a land bank for the city. Her retail location, Dirty Souls Footwear Group, opened earlier this year.

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“If you’ve ever applied for loan of grant… there’s a lot of information that’s required. And when you start to read it, especially if you’re a

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When Covid-19 struck Oakland, California, earlier this year, the Community Ready Corps (CRC) was in the middle of preparations for their latest round of emergency kit giveaways.



a car with smoke coming out of it: Photograph: Noah Berger/AP


© Provided by The Guardian
Photograph: Noah Berger/AP

Related: ‘They’re suffering now’: Americans scramble to adapt to daily reality of climate crisis

The organization had been supplying the city’s lower-income neighborhoods with earthquake kits, grocery gift cards and survival education since 2017. They shifted gears amid the pandemic, giving their stockpile of masks a new purpose in the fight against the coronavirus.

Now, with wildfires raging near the Bay Area and smoke choking the northern California air, CRC is pivoting once again, looking to consolidate their kits so they can be used during any emergency.

“We’re trying to feed two birds with one stone,” said Tur-Ha Ak, a longtime activist and the founder of CRC. “And given that wildfires are seasonal and

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Luz Arango waves to a regular at Lupita's Corner Market and Deli, a family-owned business in L.A.'s Westlake District for nearly 30 years. <span class="copyright">(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)</span>
Luz Arango waves to a regular at Lupita’s Corner Market and Deli, a family-owned business in L.A.’s Westlake District for nearly 30 years. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

People have been dropping by Lupita’s corner for years.

¡Hola mija! they often shout as they walk past the front door.

Qué hay de bueno? What’s new? 

For 27 years, the little market at West 3rd Street and Lucas Avenue in L.A.’s Westlake neighborhood has been far more than just a store.

“It’s a place that feels like home — like it belongs to us,” said Josefina Reynoso, 72.

Luz Arango, right, helps Josefina Reynoso, who was the first customer at Lupita's 27 years ago. <span class="copyright">(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)</span>
Luz Arango, right, helps Josefina Reynoso, who was the first customer at Lupita’s 27 years ago. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Before the pandemic struck, sealing off much of the world around us, Lupita’s Corner Market was on the verge of a rare transformation. Lupita Olague, 67, the single

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Joana Perez’s husband recently went back to work after the flower market where he works in Los Angeles closed down for almost four months during the coronavirus pandemic. But his comeback came at a price.

“He’s still working the same amount of days and hours, but he had to negotiate a pay cut in order to just go back to work,” said Perez, 35, who is seven months pregnant.

Her husband works from 4 a.m. to about 2 p.m. six days a week, “but the paycheck is not the same” since the flower wholesale business that employs him saw a significant slowdown as in-person events declined because of the pandemic.

Perez, her husband and their six children are among the many Latino families reporting serious financial problems, including pay cuts, running out of savings and difficulties affording food and rent, according to a poll published this month from NPR, the

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Communities of color are dying at higher rates from the novel coronavirus than white Americans. Here’s how structural inequities play a role.

USA TODAY

As the U.S. approaches nearly 200,000 deaths from the coronavirus pandemic, a new report this week provides further evidence that Black, Latino and Native American households are bearing the brunt of the outbreak’s economic fallout. 

Nearly half of U.S. households in the nation’s four largest cities reported serious financial problems amid the pandemic, according to a series of reports called “The Impact of Coronavirus.”

NPR, The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health conducted a five-part polling series in July and August of more than 3,400 adults in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Houston. The researchers asked residents about their finances, employment, health care, housing, transportation, caregiving and well-being amid the pandemic.

According to the survey, approximately 17%

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Lorena Cantarovici recalls when she arrived in the United States from Argentina nearly 20 years ago. 

“I came here with $300 and a backpack,” she said.

In the US, she worked in several restaurants and fell in love with the industry. She also realized she missed food from her native Argentina — so she thought about opening her own business making empanadas. That idea turned into Maria Empanada, a small restaurant chain with five locations around Denver. 

Over the last decade, the number of Latino business owners has grown by 34%, compared to 1% for all business owners in the United States, according to a report from the Stanford Latino Entrepreneurship Initiative, a research and education collaboration between Stanford University and the Latino Business Action Network. 

Now, those same businesses — along with those owned by African Americans — are struggling to survive the coronavirus pandemic and face particularly great

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WASHINGTON — In some corners of the Latino community, there’s a compelling familiarity to President Donald Trump’s narrative of an American economic comeback that appears to be giving him an opening where it matters most six weeks before the election: at the margins.

It’s a story that has both deep roots and immediate salience for many voters whose families fled political and economic oppression in Latin American countries for security and opportunity in the U.S., as well as for those trying to hold on to what they built in the shadow of the coronavirus crisis.

“We built the greatest economy in history, and now we’re doing it again,” Trump said Wednesday at a Latinos for Trump event in Phoenix. “As Hispanic Americans, you know better than anybody, we implemented historic tax cuts and regulation cuts, the biggest in the history of our country.”

Strategists in both parties say they see

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Topline

As the coronavirus pandemic wears on in the United States, a new poll from NPR, the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation shows the disproportionate financial toll the crisis has taken on Latino, Black, and Native American households—groups that are already at higher risk of serious illness or death caused by Covid-19. 

Key Facts

The study, which was conducted over the summer among 3,400 adults in the United States, found that majorities of Latino, Black, and Native American households reported facing “serious financial problems” during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Those problems include trouble making rent, mortgage, or credit card payments,

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By Jeff Mason



Donald Trump wearing a suit and tie: U.S. President Trump talks to reporters as he deplanes from Air Force One arriving in McClellan Park, California


© Reuters/JONATHAN ERNST
U.S. President Trump talks to reporters as he deplanes from Air Force One arriving in McClellan Park, California

PHOENIX (Reuters) – President Donald Trump on Monday intensified his efforts to win over Latino voters as polls show their support increasingly up for grabs ahead of the November presidential election – a flashing warning light for Democrat Joe Biden’s campaign.

Trump hosted what was billed as a roundtable with local Latino supporters in Phoenix, a day after holding a similar event in Las Vegas. Unlike the Nevada event, the Phoenix stop featured a raucous audience of hundreds, sitting close together in the indoor venue, despite public health concerns about the coronavirus.



a group of people sitting at a table: U.S. President Trump participates in a briefing on wildfires in McClellan Park in McClellan Park, California


© Reuters/JONATHAN ERNST
U.S. President Trump participates in a briefing on wildfires in McClellan Park in McClellan Park, California

“This is supposed to be a roundtable, but it looks like a rally,” Trump told

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