White Resigns from L.A. Latino Affairs Council

Abcarian: Almost no one was spared in that racist conversation among top L.A. Latino officials, said the Rev. Luis Garza, a church spokesman. Several top Latino leadership were forced to resign following the uproar.

“There were a lot of white men in the room,” Garza said in a phone interview. “And those white men decided, for whatever reason, they didn’t want to be seen as defending the interests of Latin American immigrants.”

He said only two Latino officials were willing to come forward and publicly discuss their role in the matter, but they received little support from Latino leaders in the U.S. who were trying to promote immigration reform.

“Those were the only two,” Garza said.

A third Los Angeles Times story revealed that White was the fourth Latino executive to resign from the L.A. Latino Affairs Council, after the others were: Maria Elena Salas, who resigned in July 2007; Miguel Martinez; and David Garcia.

“The Council of L.A. Latino Affairs is a private organization and I do not represent the Council on behalf of the City of Los Angeles,” White said in his resignation letter, obtained by the newspaper.

The council had also planned to issue a press release on White’s retirement, but White, in his letter, said he had been advised previously not to participate in the report because it would potentially damage the council’s relationship with the media.

L.A. Times, June 15, 2007

“I have tried to protect my family and my community by keeping my personal and professional relationship to you intact,” White wrote.

White was described by multiple sources as the highest-ranking Latino staffer to leave the council. He was a member of the advisory group whose findings of a Latino bias in a city commission led to the formation of the commission of investigation, he said in his letter:

The allegations made by council members were true: We are the largest minority group in Los Angeles and the city is the most segregated in the nation. The commission found that, “many members of the commission were not representative of the city as a whole and not responsive to the concerns of minority populations.�

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