WICHITA FALLS, Tx (RNN Texoma) - One Wichita Falls group that emphasizes the importance of post-secondary education for all students in the community helped organize an information session Monday evening to encourage the Hispanic and Latino community to go out and vote.
"There are several reasons as to why our community sometimes don't go and vote and that's one of the things we are trying to change so they can be part of the community, part of the political process, so they understand that they have a voice in the process because every vote counts," Cafe Con Leche Founder, Gonzalo Robles said.
Research done by the Pew Research Center shows due to the large demographic growth in the U.S the number of Latino voters grew to a record 12.7 million in 2016 compared to 11.2 million in 2012.
However, the number of Latinos who are eligible to vote and did not cast a ballot was larger than the number of Latino voters who did cast their ballot.
"I personally think that sometimes there is a disconnect between our community and the cities where they live or perhaps they don't feel like they are part of that," Robles said.
Robles wants to remind the Latino and Hispanic community that is not the case. He said their vote is important and not just for the bond election but overall.
"Your voice counts. Your vote counts," Robles said. "Unfortunately a lot of times people, in general, don't see it that way. They say well it's just my vote. Why should I go? And at the end of the day, one vote can make the difference and that can be your vote."
Robles isn't the only one reaching out. Dexter CEO and Co-founder Michael Oyala is also reminding the younger generations how important it is to get involved.
"We really teach all of our students not to be just passive consumers but active producers to engage with the community to build solutions," Oyala said. "It's one thing to protest and complain, but it's much harder to go out and do something, build something, create something, go to the polls and register to vote."
Early voting started Monday and election day is set for Saturday, May 5.