El Centro Hispano, a Triangle-based nonprofit that advocates for equity and inclusion of Latinx communities, announced its ToolBank program, which aims to provide economic opportunities for day laborers, on Feb. 12.
The ToolBank allows for workers who are part of the nonprofit's Casa for Employment & Leadership program to rent tools at a low cost.
The CEL initiative advocates for the rights of Latinx day laborers and helps them find work opportunities with higher pay. Through the new ToolBank, workers will be able to rent from the program's collection, which includes 40 tools.
Mauricio Solano, El Centro Hispano’s economic development manager, said access to tools is necessary for improving workers' abilities to take on new jobs.
"In my area, the main idea is to connect workers with employers," Solano said. "And that is the big idea, but the first goal is to increase or improve the income and the economic condition for the Latin community."
Originally established in 1992 as the Hispanic Resource Center, El Centro Hispano has worked in Hispanic, Latino and Latinx communities throughout North Carolina, focusing on education, economic development, community health, community support and civic and community participation.
El Centro Hispano opened its Carrboro branch in 2010. Mayor Damon Seils said the nonprofit has been able to support community members with finding job opportunities.
"Their work has been especially important in engaging workers in Carrboro who have needed some support in finding work and being protected from being abused by some employers in terms of wage theft," he said.
Solano said that through his work with El Centro Hispano, he has talked with workers who said they were mistreated by employers.