We asked Texas Parks & Wildlife for more details on the customer survey we wrote about today, and they have come through. And it's crazy enough to deserve its own post.
TPWD provided a power point presentation of the study; scrolling through it we noticed a summary of focus-group research done on Hispanics.
The focus groups consisted of current park visitors born in the U.S. (who "watch at least 5 hrs/week of Spanish-language TV"), current visitors from Mexico (a 10-hour Spanish-TV minimum), and Hispanics born in the U.S. who do not visit Texas state parks.
We'll just post some highlights:
"The maximum number of people per campsite rule was among the most criticized, misunderstood and disliked." (Sample quote from the focus group: "We're big families...otherwise, we get separated...we need bigger areas.")
Sounds reasonable, although we can imagine the stereotypes already revving up.
Then, it got weird.
Another slide read:
-- In general, Hispanics didn't perceive littering to be a significant problem, with the exception of the restrooms and around trash receptacles
-- Many felt that since they were paying to enter the parks, it was the parks' responsibility to keep them maintained
-- Hispanics didn't perceive themselves to be the cause of the problem, and some felt they were unfairly blamed
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Lot to work with there, if you like to spark culture wars.
Not to worry, though. Another slide noted "Hispanics offer suggestions" for "Litter Abatement":
-- Encourage people to flush instead of using trash receptacle
-- Consider increasing frequency of cleaning bathrooms
-- Consider posting bathroom cleaning schedule
-- Develop a trash clean-up hour where participants can receive a discount voucher for future park visit or other benefit
All good ideas. Especially that first one. We're not sure what it means, but it certainly sounds like a good idea. (See comments for explanations!!)