Support Local Journalism!        

Link to Owner Dr. Robert B. Pamplin Jr.



Latino advocacy group receives grant funding to help businesses adversely affected by the current economic climate.

COURTESY PHOTO: PCUN - PCUN logoA study conducted by the national Latino advocacy group Unidos US indicates that federal pandemic relief has not reached all sectors of the population equally, perhaps in large part due to communication-related challenges.

Oregon's largest Latino advocacy group, Pineros y Campesinos Unidos del Noroeste (PCUN), has engaged a program designed to equalize that disparity locally.COURTESY PHOTO: PCUN - Omar Alvarado

PCUN Executive Director Reyna Lopes and Advocacy Organizer Omar Alvarado recently announced that the group has received a grant from Oregon Latinx Leadership Network (OLLN) that will allow it to provide education and resources to affected and marginalized communities in Oregon, ensuring that Latino, Mesoamerican Indigenous, and other communities of color survive and move beyond the negative economic conditions rendered by the COVID-19 pandemic.

OLLN was established by Latino leaders statewide, including Woodburn's Anthony Veliz, at the onset of the pandemic to ensure that communication or other challenges could be addressed with regard to getting resources and ensuring safe working conditions for populations where such advocacy is needed.

Alvarado pointed to the Unidos US study showing that only 1 of 10 African American and Latino business owners received support through federal pandemic relief. He said PCUN's community organizing and outreach efforts confirmed that locally, many immigrant-owned businesses reported that they have encountered barriers to accessing funding, resources and technical assistance for their businesses.

Alvarado said that while PCUN's business surveys have predominantly been conducted in Marion County, community partners have mentioned similar barriers in other Oregon counties. He stressed that the grant will help extend outreach to these affected communities and provide the necessary information to get them critical businesses resources.

"Small and micro businesses have been one of the most impacted by COVID-19 and have some of the least access to various types of assistance," Alvarado said. "This is even more true for businesses owned by communities of color, immigrants, women, disabled and veteran-owned."

The PCUN program will provide opportunities to access resources and education to small and micro local businesses since these businesses have continually fell through the cracks. The advocacy group's leaders encourage Latino immigrant business owners to reach out and see where help can be sought.

"Strengthening local businesses has always been a passion of mine, and with this funding, our goal is to be the bridge between available and important resources and the community in need," Alvarado explained. "Along the way, we will do our best to not just provide this information but also educate and empower these business owners to continue advocating for their business needs and create a community-powered movement of small business advocacy."

About PCUN

Pineros y Campesinos Unidos del Noroeste (PCUN) is the largest Latino organization in Oregon and has advocated for Oregon farmworkers and working families since 1985, striving to empower these communities to understand and take action against systematic exploitation and its harmful effects. Issues it has tackled include minimum wage, health care and safe working environments.

Contact PCUN:

Address: 300 Young St., Woodburn, OR 97071;


Phone: (503) 902-0367;

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

You count on us to stay informed and we depend on you to fund our efforts. Quality local journalism takes time and money. Please support us to protect the future of community journalism.


- Combating COVID-19 at the grassroots level

Go to top
JSN Time 2 is designed by | powered by JSN Sun Framework