Today is El Día de los Niños. Many outside of the Latino community might not know about this day but it has been celebrated in Mexico, among other Latin American countries, since the 1920s. El Día de los Niños was first celebrated in the United States in 1997 (A short history of the U.S. history of the day can be found here). While not an official holiday, Latino communities across the nation celebrate the day at community events and by taking the time to spend it with their children. Since it is about celebrating children, I think it is a perfect time to reflect on the state of children in our country.
Policymakers have made great strides in protecting children over the last century. From outlawing (most) child labor and instituting compulsory education, the condition of children has measurably improved. However, the reality that many of our nation’s children confront is frightening. In honor of El Día de los Niños, I’ll explore some of the issues (poverty, education, health, etc.) that face our most vulnerable children. At a minimum, I hope these posts will serve as reminders that there is much work to be done to protect our country’s most precious resource. My greatest hope is that they’ll serve as a call to action to address the issue you find most dear to your heart.