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Celebrate Latinx Heritage

Latinx Heritage Month

September 12, 2022

Latinx Heritage Month will begin this September 15 and is celebrated through October 15. During this month-long celebration, we honor the history, culture, and contributions of Americans whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America. First observed as Hispanic Heritage Week in 1968 under President Lyndon Johnson, the celebration was extended to 30 days in 1988 under President Ronald Reagan.

The September to October timeframe is significant in that it encompasses the celebration of independence for many Latin American countries. Independence anniversaries are celebrated on September 15 in Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua; September 16 marks the anniversary of Mexican Independence Day; and on September 18, Chile celebrates its independence. Many Latin American countries and Spanish-speaking communities celebrate Día de la Raza on October 12, in opposition to the observance of Columbus Day, as a way to honor cultures destroyed due to European colonization.

In recent years, the term ‘Hispanic’ has been replaced with ‘Latinx’, which originated in the mid-2000s. Originally used primarily among activists, the term ‘Latinx’ is not only more inclusive of geography versus terms such as ‘Hispanic’, but is also more inclusive of non-binary, gender non-conforming, and gender-expansive persons who weren’t recognized by the use of the term ‘Latino’. It is a good practice not to assume how someone identifies; therefore, simply ask how they choose to identify.

UNC will kick off Latinx Heritage Month on September 15 from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the César Chávez Cultural Center. Join the Center's students and staff and celebrate with music and entertainment. Several events are planned for the month including an art exhibit, car show, immigration conversations, and more. UNC will welcome activist and author, Juana Bordas, as a guest speaker on October 12. More details will be shared by the Chávez Center on social media and posters can be printed and shared here for the various events planned for the month.

Take Action:

For additional education and personal development related to diversity, equity and inclusion, the following resources are available: DEI Education and Resources, DEI and Antiracism Resources from the UNC Libraries, the Education Equity Toolkit from the Colorado Department of Higher Education, and the UNITE workshops for faculty, staff, and students.