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DEI: Always Evolving

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In 2020, CADIA published a LI post entitled “Understanding the Terms Hispanic and Latinx” as part of our celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15 – Oct. 15).

As is common in DEI work, things change quickly. Currently, CADIA would not promote the use of the term “Latinx” because for many reasons, the term is not embraced by the community it describes.

Only 3 percent of US Latinos even use the term.  No doubt created with the best of intentions; it exposes the risk of using generalized terms when nuance is required.

As I started to understand the rejection of this term, I thought of the slogan of the disability community that applies here: “nothing about us without us.”  It reminds me that as DEI practitioners, we need to appreciate nuance – and not use broad generalizations and terms to label groups.  We are all capable of understanding and distinguishing the proper usage of terms such as Hispanic, Latin, Latino, Chicano, etc. Proper usage shows respect, understanding and a willingness to learn.  It just takes a little research, education and practice.  To help advance your understanding, here’s a great NYT editorial  by 16-year old Evan Odegard Pereira.

We celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month- with all the rich cultural traditions, the contributions to the workplace and the economy, and the unique ways it has shaped our industry. And we use it as a reminder to continue to learn and evolve with the times.

Related reference points:
Hispanics are leading multi cultural growth in the automotive industry – IHS Markit
Controversy over the term Latinx –
For most Latinos, Latinx does not mark the spot - NYT

Article exclusively written for
Authored by Margaret Baxter