Oklahoma House, Senate members announce new Latino caucus

Oklahoma House, Senate Members Announce New Latino Caucus
Sue Ogrocki

FILE - In this July 25, 2017, file photo, then-Oklahoma state Sen.-elect Michael Brooks speaks on the Senate floor before his swearing-in ceremony in Oklahoma City. Four members of the Oklahoma Legislature, including Brooks, have announced the creation of a new bipartisan Legislative Latino Caucus. The founding members include Brooks, D-Oklahoma City, state Sen. Jessica Garvin, R-Duncan, and Reps. Jose Cruz, D-Oklahoma City, and Ryan Martinez, R-Edmond.

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Four members of the Oklahoma Legislature — two state senators and two state representatives — announced Wednesday the creation of a new bipartisan Legislative Latino Caucus.

The founding members include Sens. Michael Brooks, D-Oklahoma City, and Jessica Garvin, R-Duncan, and Reps. Jose Cruz, D-Oklahoma City, and Ryan Martinez, R-Edmond.

Brooks says the caucus will help better address the unique needs of Oklahoma’s Latino community, which is the state’s fastest-growing population group.

“This caucus will ensure the Legislature stays informed of the Latino community’s economic and cultural contributions to our state,” Brooks said.

U.S. Census data show Oklahomans who identify as Latino or Hispanic comprise more than 11% of the state’s population, more than Black (7.8%) or Native American (9.4%) Oklahomans.