Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders Blog
- Posted byon June 22, 2012 at 10:27 AM EST
On Thursday, the White House Office of Public Engagement and the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs) welcomed Filipino American leaders from across the country for a White House briefing for the Filipino American community.
As a proud second-generation Filipino American, I was honored to join members of my community who heard from Obama Administration officials on issues of importance to Filipino Americans nationwide.
White House Executive Chef, Cris Comerford, makes a surprise visit to the White House Briefing for Filipino American leaders, June 21, 2012. (Photo by Jason Tengco)
- Posted byon June 14, 2012 at 5:10 PM EST
On June 7, the White House Office of Public Engagement, in collaboration with the Council of Korean Americans (CKA), welcomed more than 175 Korean American leaders from across the nation for a briefing by Obama Administration officials on issues of importance to the Korean American community.
The White House Office of Public Engagement and the Council of Korean Americans host a briefing for Korean American leaders, June 7, 2012. (Photo courtesy of Taeck Jang Photography)
The briefing was kicked off by Chris Lu, Cabinet Secretary and Co-Chair of the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs), who welcomed the participants to the White House, and noted that it was important for the federal government to hear from Americans about how it can better serve them.
- Posted byon June 13, 2012 at 8:00 AM EST
A year ago, I wrote that the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) was in the midst of launching several important activities as part of its commitment to the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. As I said then, transportation is vitally important to the growth and development of the AAPI community. And I’m happy to report that over the past 12 months, DOT has taken specific steps that will enable the community to fully and safely participate in the nation’s transportation system.
For example, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has developed pedestrian safety resources for Chinese-, Filipino-, Vietnamese- and Korean-speaking families. These handy materials include tips for parents of elementary school children on how to prevent pedestrian accidents, along with a “Walkability Checklist” families can use to determine if their neighborhoods are pedestrian-friendly. These free resources are available for download on the NHTSA website. In addition, NHTSA is actively working to finalize and implement a dissemination plan to make sure these important safety messages reach the frontlines of the AAPI community.
- Posted byon May 31, 2012 at 9:00 AM EST
The Community Relations Service (CRS) is a component of the U.S. Department of Justice that is responsible for working with community-based organizations, state and local government officials, law enforcement, and civil rights groups to help them peacefully resolve conflicts resulting issues of race, color, and national origin. The agency also supports local efforts to prevent and respond to violent hate crimes committed on the basis of race, color, national origin, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, or disability.
In CRS’ forty-eight year history, we have mediated many emotionally charged conflicts affecting Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) communities, and according to Ron Wakabayashi, a Regional Director with the agency, awareness of discrimination against Asian Americans has increased. Wakabayashi is responsible for CRS operations in Arizona, Nevada, California, Hawaii, and Guam, and was formerly the Executive Director of Japanese American Citizens League.
- Posted byon May 31, 2012 at 8:00 AM EST
“Saving face can’t make you safe. Talk about HIV—for me, for you, for everyone.” The slogan is reflective of how Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders need to embrace the growing concern of HIV in our communities. Judging by recent activities the efforts to educate the community about HIV is having an impact.
On May 19, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders gathered at more than 20 community events for the 8th Annual National Asian & Pacific Islander HIV/AIDS Awareness Day. From Jacksonville, Florida to Upper Tumon, Guam to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Honolulu, Hawaii, AAPIs met to raise awareness about HIV and AIDS, encourage testing and and prevention efforts, and seek an end to the stigma about HIV in the community. The events featured free HIV testing and counseling, educational forums, video screenings and other activities.
- Posted byon May 30, 2012 at 10:30 AM EST
Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs) often lack access to mental health and substance abuse services and face stigma and cultural barriers to seeking care, and when they do seek treatment, culturally and linguistically appropriate services are often not available. In recognition of Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) Office of Behavioral Health Equity (OBHE) recently hosted a roundtable on strategies for reducing behavioral health disparities and promoting integrated care for the AAPI population. Dr. Rocco Cheng, project director of the California Reducing Disparities Project’s AAPI workgroup, gave a presentation on his workgroup’s efforts and findings on AAPI-specific disparities and effective strategies for addressing them. Among them, Dr. Cheng reported that culturally and linguistically responsive strategies are critical for reaching out to and serving AAPI communities.
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