As we have previously reported, Latinos are underrepresented in the ever-growing technology industry, as well as in educational programs that prepare young people for those careers. On Wednesday, Rev. Jesse Jackson decided to call attention to the tech industry's diversity problem by writing an open letter to Silicon Valley giants and leading a delegation to Hewlett-Packard's shareholders meeting.

Jackson wants to highlight the tech industry's poor record of including blacks and Latinos in hiring, appointments to prominent executive positions, and funding startups, according to a report by the Associated Press. Jackson is famous as a political and civil rights activist, and is the leader of the Rainbow PUSH Coalition, a non-profit that pursues social justice and civil rights.

Jackson said he intended to make remarks before an HP shareholders meeting on Wednesday, and published the speech on the Rainbow PUSH Coalition website on Thursday. In it, he urged HP to lead Silicon Valley towards a more inclusive state, but according to the AP, Jackson wasn't singling out HP. Rather, he was using the company's annual meeting as a platform to address tech giants like Apple, Twitter, Facebook, Google, and others as well.

"Technology is supposed to be about inclusion, but sadly, patterns of exclusion remains the order of the day," wrote Jackson in his open letter. "When it comes to African Americans on Board -- ZERO. C-suites, ZERO. Minority firms in IPO's and financial transactions, advertising and professional services -- ZERO. These ZEROES are contrary to the enlightened values exposed by the industry. Rainbow PUSH is seeking meetings with tech leaders to address these ZEROES head on."

In his speech to the shareholders of HP, Jackson was even more critical in tone, stating at one point, "The tech industry is perhaps the worst industry when it comes to inclusion."

According to the AP, the tech industry has quite a diversity problem, which becomes clear looking at data from the most recent U.S. Census. For example, only about 1 in 14 workers in the tech industry is black or Latino -- a figure that remains consistent both nationally and in Silicon Valley. That's about 7 percent overall, compared to the nearly 13 percent black and 17 percent Latino populations, nationally. In California, the disparity for Latinos becomes much larger, as Pew recently projected that Latinos now account for just less than 40 percent of that state's population.

As for Jackson's choice of HP as a staging ground for his call to diversity, HP Executive Vice President Henry Gomez told the AP the company was "puzzled." "While we certainly agree that diversity is an important issue in corporate America, we're puzzled by Rev. Jackson's sudden interest in HP," said Gomez in a statement to the AP. "Today, HP is the largest company in the world with both a female CEO and CFO, and nearly half of our leadership team and board of directors are women and minorities. Additionally, nearly 50 years ago, HP established the first minority business program in the United States."

In his speech though, Jackson outlined that HP's (relative) good standing in diversity -- something which Rainbow PUSH commended as recently as 2011 -- was why he chose HP to raise his concerns:

"HP is uniquely position to lead this new era," stated Jackson. "Inclusion and fairness is part of the DNA of HP's history. Your Digital Village initiative of the past decade was a model partnership for the East Palo Alto community. Your former CEO Carly Fiorina and Meg Whitman are two of the trailblazing women in technology, paving the way for the Sheryl Sandbergs and Marisa Mayers.

"When women lean in, so must Blacks and Latinos move forward. Everyone must be included. I appeal to you today to forge new partnerships, build new relationships and lead the valley into this next era."