To honor the achievements of Hispanics in America, the Congress has authorized and requested the President to issue annually a proclamation designating September 15 through October 15 as "National Hispanic Heritage Month."
In the 2011 Proclamation, President Obama wrote "From those who trace their roots to America's earliest days to those who recently came to the United States carrying nothing but hope for a better life, Hispanics have always been integral to our national story. As an American family more than 300 million strong, we constitute one people, sharing sacrifice and prosperity because we know we rise and fall together. America is a richer and more vibrant country because of the contributions of Hispanics, and during National Hispanic Heritage Month, we celebrate the immeasurable impact they have made on our Nation.
Hispanics have had a profound and positive influence on our country through their strong commitment to family, faith, hard work, and service. They have enhanced and shaped our national character with centuries-old traditions that reflect the multiethnic and multicultural customs of their community. They are doctors and lawyers, activists and educators, entrepreneurs and public servants, and brave service members who defend our way of life at home and abroad."
The Cleveland celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month began with a ceremony in the Rotunda of Cleveland City Hall. Thanks to Arooj Ashraf for the following photos from the event.