Lobbying with OLÉ


Lobbying with OLÉ

Lobbying at the Roundhouse with Conrad James

Lobbying means the act of attempting to influence decisions made by officials in the government, most often legislators or members of regulatory agencies.

We can help prepare you to speak with your Senator/Representative and effectively lobby for the issues that matter the most to you.

Join Text Message List with OLÉ – NMleg15

Join Text Message List with OLÉ for Updates for
the New Mexico Legislative Session.

Thousands Gather at NM Capitol for Kids.

Thousands Gather at NM Capitol in Support for Kids — NMleg14

Child Care Closures Plague New Mexico

Child Care Closures Plague New Mexico

State Policies Bad for Business of Educating New Mexico’s Young Kids

A statewide study¹ shows that New Mexico’s child development centers have continued to close at an alarming rate across the state. Over 173 centers have closed since 2010, when the state first cut eligibility for child care contracts and reimbursement rates for providers.

The study notes that CYFD’s reimbursement rates to providers, which fall well-below the market rate for child care, is one cause for the center closures that continue to plague the state.

“The Martinez Administration has a double-standard for how they pay state contractors: early-learning centers get paid at a loss, but every other kind of business makes a profit,” said Raquel Roybal, a PEOPLE for the Kids board member. “If you pave a road for the state, you make money, but if you educate a young child, under the Martinez Administration, you lose money.”

map of earlyed center closureYELLOW: Closures in 2011
GREEN: Closures in 2012
BLUE: Closures in 2013
RED: Closures in 2014

The study notes that only 69% of centers across the state accept CYFD contracts, down 14% since 2011. “CYFD’s reimbursement rates simply don’t cover the cost of the education we provide,” said Roxanne Rosa, Director of Our Montessori School in Albuquerque and also a board member of PEOPLE for the Kids, the coalition that released the study.

The study also notes that CYFD provides contracts to over 5,000 fewer children than it did in 2009, accounting for a significant loss in revenue that centers across the state used to rely on.

PEOPLE for the Kids is a coalition of parents, early educators, and early learning center owners and directors. Early Educators United, the OLÉ Working Parents Association, and the Quality Early Learning Association are its founding organizational members.

¹Center Closure Study 2014

CYFD Comic

After the OLÉ Working Parents Association and the preschool teachers and owners from Early Educators United and QELA joined forces to make a stink about CYFD, the Legislative Health and Human Services Committee invited us to come testify on August 5. Below is a comic illustrating what happened next.


If you like what you read, please share it with others so they may also enjoy it, thank you.


CYFD Commits Fraud!

CYFD Commits Fraud! 
CYFD commits Fraud flyer

CYFD refused to give Cynthia the study time that she needs to keep up with her schoolwork. Cynthia is working hard as a substitute teacher to provide for her family while she works toward her degree at CNM. CYFD regulations say that college students should have child care for the hours that they need to study, but CYFD tells Cynthia that she can’t have them. CYFD is violating its own regs, defrauding Cynthia of the child care hours she’s entitled to.

CYFD Commits Fraud! Help us stop them by donating HERE.

If you’d like to fill out a survey of questions that will help us start to find a solution for your child care contract, click HERE.


Text Message Updates, Join Today!


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text message updates


If you would like to get involved with us in any of these issues, please click HERE.

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Youth Employment Summer Institute Application


YES! (Youth Employment Summer Institute) represents a collaboration with SouthWest Organizing Project, Organizers in the Land Enchantment (OLÉ), Native American Voters Alliance (NAVA), El Centro De Igualdad y Derechos, Partnership for Community Action, Generation Justice, and New Mexico Forum for Youth in Community. Youth who participate in the program will be work directly with one of these community organizations.

Youth will participate in a 12-week employment program that will develop their leadership skills, increase their skills for future employment and engage them in improving their community. YES! will provide employment opportunities that allow young people (between the ages of 14-24) to become engaged in community while also being challenged to think critically about the world around them. Through this program they will not only gain valuable job skills but will also develop meaningful relationships rooted in local community organizations that will provide them a home for continued community involvement.

Bosque Update on Meetings

Federico Garcia Lorca

To the rallying cry “Bosque que te quiero Bosque” (Bosque, I love you Bosque), over 400 people packed a public meeting sponsored by the City of Albuquerque in response to the Rio Grande Vision (RGV), a pet project of Albuquerque Mayor Richard J. Berry. The wildly unpopular plan included plans for a boardwalk, restaurant and paved paths in the Bosque. While the RGV was scaled down to a ten foot-wide path (paved with crusher fine), the community opposed any kind of development within the levees. Working to protect the Bosque is the main focus of the River Writers, OLÉ’s conservation group.

The River Writers incorporate their own origin stories as a way of connecting with the Bosque and the Rio Grande. What started as a simple writing group launched the River Writers into taking immediate action to save the Bosque. At the meeting, held on September 4, 2013, three of the River Writers – Thane Padilla, Vickie Regina and Jeannette Smyth, stood together to demand that the facilitators give ample time to hear from the community. The facilitators, which included staff from both the City as well as design firm Dekker Perich Sabatini, intended to have participants write comments based on posters that showed concepts for the RGV. This tactic, perceived as a way to silence the opposition, was rejected by many in attendance. The River Writers and other allies demanded the opportunity to be heard. For three hours, community members from all walks of life made it abundantly clear that they do NOT want to see any type of development in the Bosque.

The next public meeting was slated to be held on September 18. The City canceled the meeting, but a coalition of community groups including OLÉ held the meeting despite the Mayor’s office’s efforts to silence community voices. With over 200 people in attendance, community members discussed not only their opposition to the Plan but also offered viable, proactive solutions including education and conservation efforts in the Bosque. The following day, OLÉ members delivered over 600 letters and petitions to the Mayor’s office opposing any kind of development in the Bosque.

While the work to save the Bosque from development continues, the River Writers are also focused on outreach to community members, particularly people of color and working class people, to join OLÉ’s conservation efforts.

For more information on joining the River Writers, email Andrea Serrano at aserrano@olenm.org

If you’d like to help and volunteer to continue the fight, click HERE.



After a Constitutional Amendment that would put $150 million into early education programs passed the New Mexico House this year, Senator John Arthur Smith dragged the bill into his committee and refused to give it a hearing. He killed it.

A study, which was released summer of 2013, showed that New Mexico has dropped to last place in the nation for child welfare, bumping Mississippi up to 49th.

That’s when members of our Working Parents Association decided it was time for someone to call out Senator Smith for abusing his power and driving New Mexico’s child welfare down to 50th in the nation.



Click on the following cause(s) you would like to volunteer for:

We are fighting to make high-quality Early Childhood Education affordable for every child in New Mexico.
We must hold Legislators in Santa Fe accountable to ensure our children enter Kindergarten properly developed and ready to learn.

One of our strategies for comprehensive immigration reform is to encourage more legal residents who qualify for citizenship to go through the process and to help them succeed, so we have more active and engaged immigrant voters in our communities.
Click HERE to find out times/days of classes.
We look forward to meeting you.

We believe that hard work, deserves fair pay and we want to make sure it stays that way in NM.
After helping to raise the minimum wage in Albuquerque and Bernalillo county, we continue the fight to enforce the law and look for opportunities to increase the wage in other parts of the state..


Feel free to fill out a contact form if you would like to get
a hold of someone that way: http://olenm.org/contact/

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