Gaining official recognition of Latin Americans as an ethnic group in London and the UK, and the inclusion of the category ‘Latin American’ in ethnic monitoring.
The UK has had a Latin American community for over 40 years. The first significant flow of Latin Americans arrived during the 1970s, and was mainly made of Chileans who were escaping prosecution during Pinochet’s dictatorship. In the 1980s and throughout the 90s, many Latin Americans came to the UK, mainly from Colombia, through a Work Permit Scheme or to reunite with family members. Much larger flows, however, started coming during in the past decade, making Latin Americans one of London’s fastest growing groups. There were 186,500 Latin Americans in 2008 and increasing numbers continue to arrive from other European countries, displaced by the financial crisis. Currently, the main nationalities of this highly diverse, culturally reach community are Brazilians, Colombians, Ecuadorians, Bolivians and Peruvians.

The community is largely concentrated in London, but there are pockets of Latin Americans in various areas of the country, particularly in Manchester, Leeds, and Brighton. The cultural and economic contribution of the community to the UK is reflected in the wide offer of Latin American restaurants, festivals, cultural events, media and commercial initiatives.

As a result of our collective efforts, Latin Americans have been officially recognised as an ethnic group by the London Boroughs of Southwark, Lambeth, Islington, and Hackney. Recognition has brought important changes for the local population, fostering the inclusion of Latin Americans at all levels from access to services to political representation.

We work closely with these boroughs to help advance the recognition process. At the same time, we work to inform other local authorities, the GLA and central government about the presence and needs of Latin Americans, as the community remains invisible in terms of policy, strategy and practice in the rest of the country.

Follow our work

07 Sep 2015 LA Let’s Vote! Campaign Launch
27 Jun 2015 Stakeholders meeting in Brent
26 Apr 2015 Newham Campaign launched
29 Jan 2015 Celebrating Recognition at Islington
16 Mar 2015 Celebrating Recognition at Hackney
24 Nov 2014 Deputation to Haringey Council
16 Jul 2014 London Assembly passes motion
10 Apr 2014 Celebrating Recognition at Lambeth
14 Feb 2014 2014 Latin American Manifesto
30 Nov 2013 Lambeth Recognition announced!
20 Nov 2013 CLAUK’s Deputation to Lambeth
13 Jun 2013 Conference at Argentine Embassy

Recognition in Newham

On Sunday, April 26th, at the premises of the University of East London, we launched the campaign for official recognition of Latin Americans in Newham as an ethnic group. More…

Recognition in Brent

CLAUK organised a stakeholders meeting with a local councillor, Latin American organisations, churches, and groups providing services for the Brazilian community in Brent. More…

Recognition in Haringey

In December 2013, CLAUK led a delegation that delivered a deputation to Haringey Council. We presented the case of the community and requested for official recognition. More…


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