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Immigration, social work and meal services | 'Latino Memphis' serves local Hispanic community

Latino Memphis aims to provide local services to Hispanic Community in accessible way.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Latino Memphis provides Hispanic Memphians with legal services for immigration, human trafficking, work permits and more to make life easier for those who don’t have access to feasible local resources. 

Mauricio Calvo is the CEO of Latino Memphis and Alonso Muniz Cortes is a Department of Justice (DOJ)-accredited representative. 

A DOJ-accredited representative is someone who is not an attorney but has shown the DOJ they are educated in immigration law.

"Today, the Latinx community in Memphis is growing," Calvo said. "It is the fastest growing segment of the population in Memphis. The 2020 census shows that the white community decreased by about 13 percent, yet the Latino and Asian community had huge jumps.”

With that increase comes a need for those with a similar background to help out.

“I am an immigrant,” Muniz Cortes said. “I cam to the United States as a child so I’ve always had a connection to the struggles of the immigrant community.”

“We have a portfolio of social and legal services," Calvo said. "We have a full-size immigration and legal department." 

All requiring an expert bilingual team to breakdown the legal jargon.

“Some people might say that 'entro en visa' or 'I entered on a visa,' but that doesn’t necessarily give everything you need to know about their entry or their current status,” Muniz Cortes said. “It requires a bigger conversation and translating just the words often misses the mark and often makes the conversation more difficult—unless you’re sitting one-on-one with an interpreter or an attorney who speaks Spanish as we have on our staff.”

Calvo said the organization is also in the space of family reunification.

“Last year, Latino Memphis helped reunify 351 children from the border into a home in Tennessee,” Calvo said. “We also have case managers that work with human trafficking victims. We do financial empowerment, so it’s all of those individual services.”

In just seven months with Latino Memphis, Muniz Cortes said he’s already assisted  upwards of 80 people with their process.

"I hope to keep up with that pace," he said.

As the Hispanic population continues to grow, there will always be more work to be done.

“Ultimately we want to go out of business,” Calvo said. “What we want is for people, Latinos and Latinas who are so successful that they don’t need an organization such as Latino Memphis.”

If you or someone you know need a service Latino Memphis provides, you can get assistance by calling or texting Latino Memphis on WhatsApp at 901-366-5882.

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