Línea Directa is an award-winning Spanish-language television series that provides Latino families in the Washington metropolitan area with information on their rights, as well as on important health, legal, education and social service issues. After 25 years of innovative outreach, the half-hour program has become an established community institution, broadcasting crucial messages directly into the living rooms, kitchens and bedrooms of thousands of Latino households.
A groundbreaking partnership that is unique in the nation allows EVS to produce Línea Directa in the studios of NBC4 in Washington, D.C. The weekly program is then broadcast and cablecast throughout the region by the Spanish-language television station Telemundo Washington during one of the commercial channel’s most coveted time slots — Sunday mornings, at 11:00 a.m.
Línea Directa serves as a crucial link between local residents and services available from government and community-based organizations. On local commercial Spanish-language television, only Línea Directa provides in-depth, solution-oriented discussions about such issues of importance to Latino families as the parental role in education, affordable medical services for families without health insurance, the rights of Latino workers, the Afro-Latino experience, domestic violence, the foreclosure crisis, citizenship and voting, teen pregnancy, gang violence prevention, breast and cervical cancer, pedestrian safety, and consumer fraud.
The program helps to build trust between government and Latino residents for the simple reason that Línea Directa allows Latino viewers to hear directly from the dedicated individuals who are working on their behalf.
Línea Directa programs have featured numerous local leaders, as well as representatives from nearly every nonprofit and government agency serving the region’s immigrant population. According to Gustavo Torres, Executive Director of CASA de Maryland, “There is no other television program that connects our families to much-needed social services. Línea Directa is an essential lifeline, and we are grateful for the program’s dedication to our community.” María Gómez, President and CEO of Mary’s Center for Maternal and Child Health, adds, “There is simply no other place on Spanish-language television that offers bilingual nonprofit organizations the opportunity to reach thousands of Latino households, and to engage in a half-hour of unfiltered, in-depth conversation about the availability of much needed social services.”
Through the years, Línea Directa has been sponsored by such organizations as the Meyer Foundation, the Washington Post, the Montgomery County Council, the Prince George’s County Council, the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments, the Ford Foundation, the IDB-DC Solidarity Fund, the American Legacy Foundation, SEIU, the Philip Graham Fund, the AFL-CIO, and the Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions.