Lawmakers Want To Make October “Hispanic Heritage Month”

TRENTON – Last week, Assemblymen Neil M. Cohen and Joseph Cryan announced the introduction of legislation that would statutorily designate each October as “Hispanic Heritage Month” in New Jersey.

Senator Raymond J. Lesniak announced he will sponsor an identical version of the legislation in the Senate.

“It is important to recognize the richness of culture that the New Jersey’s Hispanic communities bring to the state,” said Cohen (D-Union).  “Their contributions to our communities and our country deserve to be permanently commemorated.”

The bill (AJR-76) would codify October of each year in New Jersey as Hispanic Heritage Month.  Activities during the month would serve to commemorate the contributions Hispanic and Hispanic-American residents have made to the state and the nation.

The sponsors said they introduced legislation to create the permanent designation to avoid the chaos of scrambling to submit a bill each year to maintain the designation. Similar laws have been enacted to designate commemorations that include Black History Month, Women’s History Week, and Alzheimer’s Disease Awareness Month.

“New Jersey’s Hispanic and Hispanic-American communities deserve to be honored,” said Cryan (D-Union).  “Their efforts and cultural impact have made enormous positive contributions to our state that need to be recognized.”

“The Latino community in New Jersey has a rich heritage and has contributed so much to the tapestry of New Jersey culture,” said Lesniak (D-Union).  “It’s only fitting that we designate a month in each year to recognize the contributions, culture, and history of Hispanic New Jersey.  This is an honor whose time is long overdue in the Garden State.”

The Assembly version of the bill has been referred to the Assembly State Government Committee.  Upon its introduction, the Senate version will be referred to the Senate State Government Committee.

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