Hispanic Heritage Month takes place September 15 to October 15 every year as a time to recognize and celebrate the many contributions, diverse cultures, and extensive histories of the American Latino community. Beginning in 1968, Hispanic Heritage Month was originally observed as “Hispanic Heritage Week” under President Lyndon Johnson, but it was later extended to a month during President Ronald Reagan’s term in 1988.
Since then, the month has been celebrated nationwide through festivals, art shows, conferences, community gatherings, and much more. The month also celebrates the independence days of several Latin American countries, including: Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua on September 15th, Mexico on September 16th, and Chile on September 18th.
President Donald Trump officially proclaimed National Hispanic Heritage Month in a release on September 13th, saying:
We are grateful for the many contributions Hispanic American men and women make to our society and the vibrancy they weave into our American culture. From America’s earliest days, Hispanic Americans have played a prominent and important role in our national heritage, and Hispanic Americans continue to embody the pioneering spirit of America today. Demonstrating a steadfast commitment to faith, family, and hard work, Hispanic Americans lift up our communities and our economy as entrepreneurs, executives, and small business owners, and make contributions in areas such as science, art, music, politics, academia, government, and sports…Hispanic Americans are a testament to the American promise that anyone can succeed in the United States through hard work.
Observing Hispanic Heritage Month allows our country to show its recognition and support for the work Latinos are doing in helping this country grow. Along with recognizing the importance of Hispanic Heritage Month, it is equally important to us at the Initiative that we raise awareness on Hispanic Heritage Month resources available from other agencies within the Federal Government. Compiled below is a list of different resources relevant to Hispanic Heritage Month, along with their respective agencies.
- Census Bureau: Background Information on Hispanic Heritage Month
- Census Bureau: Facts for Features: Hispanic Heritage Month 2017
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Health Initiatives and Campaigns for Hispanic Health
- Citizenship and Immigration Services: Recursos para la naturalización (Resources for naturalization)
- Department of Health and Human Services, Office on Minority Health: Hispanic Health Disparities
- Department of Health and Human Services, Office on Women’s Health: Promoting Healthcare in Hispanic Communities
- Department of the Interior: Discover Hispanic Heritage at these historic sites
- Department of Veteran’s Affairs: Hispanic-American Veterans: Embracing, enriching and serving America
- National Eye Institute: Resources on Eye Health
- National Park Service: Educational Resources and Places to See During Hispanic Heritage Month
- Patent and Trademark Office: Hispanic Heritage and Inventions
- Smithsonian Institution: Hispanic Heritage Month Events at the Smithsonian
- U.S. Navy: Hispanic Americans in the U.S. Navy
- U.S. Navy: Navy Celebrates 2017 Hispanic Heritage Month