We do a lot of talking about the influence of the Hispanic consumer market as we work with credit unions to secure loyalty from the youngest, fastest growing and most underserved community in the U.S. In recent times, this mounting power has been most apparent during presidential elections.
Indeed, we can already see signs of it in the upcoming race to the White House. In fact, Univision Host Jorge Ramos recently said there is a new rule in politics: Winning the White House can’t be done without Hispanics.
The Hispanic vote is expected to increase by as much as 25 percent in 2016, from 12 to 16 million. Although this segment of the voting public generally turns out for Democrats, some believe the Republican party will also benefit from the upped number of Hispanic voters in the next election.
According to Fusion’s Massive Millennial Poll, which surveyed 1000 people aged 18 to 34, Jeb Bush has a good deal of support from young, would-be Hispanic voters. Bush’s wife is Latina, and he is generally viewed as more pro-immigration reform than other Republican candidates. As well, Latino evangelicals are a demographic with emerging political clout.
Other areas in which the influence of Hispanics in the U.S. can be felt:
- Thirty-four seats in Congress and four seats in the Senate are occupied by Hispanics. Although this is not reflective of the 17-percent Hispanic U.S. population, these numbers are increasing steadily.
- From 1996 to 2012, college enrollment among Hispanics ages 18 to 24 more than tripled with a 240-percent increase.
- Hispanic-owned businesses here in the U.S. now number above 3 million. That’s a 40-percent growth rate, and its inspiring features like CNBC’s list of top Hispanic entrepreneurs in America.
- Even language has been impacted. The U.S. is predicted to have the biggest Spanish-speaking population of any country by 2050. As well, the Merriam-Webster dictionary recently added the Spanish word chilaquiles (a Mexican food dish) and has said it also plans to add churrasco (Spanish for grilled meat).
Now more than ever, it is becoming incredibly important for credit unions to consider the influence of Hispanics on their local communities. How can that power be harnessed for the improvement of the cooperative? How can the credit union’s leadership better represent the cultural makeup of the local area, and how can the membership also become more reflective of the communities you serve?