Like Arkansas, Hispanic Connecticut lawmakers suggest banning Latinx from government documents
The bill’s Chief Sponsor, Rep. Geraldo Reyes, was one of five Latino Democratic lawmakers to put their name on the legislation.
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Hispanic Democratic lawmakers in Connecticut are suggesting the state follow in the footsteps of Arkansas Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders, and ban the term ‘Latinx’ from official government documents.
Sanders signed the Executive Order to Respect the Latino Community by Eliminating Culturally Insensitive Words from Official Use in Government within hours of being inaugurated on Jan. 11.
"Ethnically insensitive and pejorative language has no place in official government documents or government employee titles," she said at the time.
“We want to root that out and make sure it never sees the light of day here in the State of Arkansas,” she added.
The bill’s Chief Sponsor in Connecticut, Rep. Geraldo Reyes, was one of five other Latino state representatives to put their name on the legislation. Reyes said the word was disrespectful to Spanish speakers, and called it a “woke” term that is offensive to the state’s large Puerto Rican population.
“This has been offensive and derogatory to all Puerto Ricans, and it’s something that hasn’t sat well with a lot of people here for a while.” Reyes told CT Insider. “When I found out that Arkansas Gov. [Sanders] banned it on her first day in the office, I saw that as an opportunity for me to do the same thing.”
“I’m of Puerto Rican descent and I find it offensive,” he added.
The four other Latino Democratic members sponsoring the bill are state Rep. Christopher Rosario, D-Bridgeport, Rep. Juan R. Candelaria, D-New Haven, Rep. Robert Sanchez, D-New Haven, and Rep. Minnie Gonzalez, D-Hartford, who are also members of the state legislature’s Black and Puerto Rican Caucus.
Titled, “An Act Prohibiting the use of the term ‘Latinx’ By State Agencies,” the bill asks that the “general statutes be amended to prohibit any state agency, or state employee on behalf of a state agency, from using the term "Latinx" on any official communications or forms of the state agency.”
“The Spanish language, which is centuries old, defaults to Latino for everybody,” Reyes said. “It’s all-inclusive. They didn’t need to create a word, it already exists.”
Reyes even backed the former White House Press Secretary’s executive order, adding that while his motivations differ from hers, Huckabee Sanders’ decision was the correct one.
He expects the bill to get a hearing before the Democratic-controlled legislature’s Government Administration and Elections Committee.
Adam Joseph, Democratic Gov. Ned Lamont’s spokesman said the office will follow the debate as the bill makes its way through the Legislature.
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