Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders Blog
- Posted byon May 31, 2012 at 9:00 AM EDT
“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 11:30 AM EDT
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.
- Posted byon May 29, 2012 at 2:30 PM EDT
Ed. Note: This piece is cross-posted from the Department of Veterans Affairs blog.
The observance of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage month is also an occasion to remember the patriotism of AAPIs that have served, and are currently serving in the United States Military.
Reviews of historical documents reflect the first recorded history of Asian Americans fighting on behalf of the United States as far back as 1815, when General Andrew Jackson recorded that “Manilamen” had fought alongside his in defense of New Orleans, under the command of Jean Baptiste Lafitte. That proud tradition has continued to the current conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. Approximately 1.5 percent of Veterans, and seven percent of the Department of Veterans Affairs’ employees are of Asian American and Pacific Islander descent.
- Posted byon May 29, 2012 at 9:00 AM EDT
As a native Houstonian, I was raised in a community with a large Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) population. My exposure to the rich cultural and linguistic diversity of AAPI communities continued during the decade I spent in New York City, where I also had the opportunity to work with AAPI organizations at the local level. At the most personal level, I have had the profoundly joyous experience of being a proud aunt to two incredible children of Chinese and Korean descent. So, while the Census would not count me as an AAPI, this community has always been an integral part of my life.
Through my work with the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, I’ve been able to broaden my experience and gain a national, more holistic perspective on the scope of the challenges and opportunities that exist in this community. My involvement in the Initiative has been one of the highlights of my time in the Administration. It has been such an honor to serve on the Federal Interagency Working Group and learn about the impressive work that’s being done across the administration in support of Executive Order 13515. In addition, it has been a privilege to connect with the leadership of the President’s Advisory Commission on AAPIs and gain a better understanding of their grassroots efforts to improve the lives of AAPIs throughout the country.
- Posted byon May 25, 2012 at 9:00 AM EDT
The Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice is committed to protecting the civil rights of all individuals. Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs) have made significant progress in expanding access to opportunity in recent decades. However, discrimination persists, and access to opportunity all too frequently remains elusive. As a result, the Civil Rights Division remains actively involved in the enforcement of civil rights laws in a variety of settings relevant to AAPI communities.
The Civil Rights Division continues to work to ensure that all students have access to equal educational opportunity. On December 2, 2011, the Departments of Justice and Education released two new guidance documents making clear that educators may consider race in carefully constructed plans to promote diversity or, in K-12 education, to reduce racial isolation. The guidance recognizes the learning benefits to students when campuses and schools include students of diverse backgrounds. On May 6, 2011, in conjunction with the Department of Education, the Division issued a letter clarifying school district obligations to enroll students regardless of their, or their parents’ or guardians’, actual or perceived citizenship or immigration status. The guidance was disseminated nationwide to ensure that undocumented students are able to enroll and participate in school.
- Posted byon May 24, 2012 at 1:35 PM EDT
I am hapa, half Chinese and half German. To complicate my ethnicity even more, my mother – though ethnically Chinese – was born and raised in Vietnam. When I was growing up, I often struggled with my ethnicity and my identity. Because I look white, I never felt accepted by the Asian American community. And because I was raised by a strong Chinese mother, I didn’t identify with American culture.
More recently, I realized that I actually relate to most Americans. Because most of us have a common story, a common thread. Our families came here to achieve the American dream. Immigrating to this great nation of ours with hardly a dollar in their pockets, they worked hard and paved the way for the next generation to have better opportunities.
White House Blogs
- The White House Blog
- Middle Class Task Force
- Council of Economic Advisers
- Council on Environmental Quality
- Council on Women and Girls
- Office of Intergovernmental Affairs
- Office of Management and Budget
- Office of Public Engagement
- Office of Science & Tech Policy
- Office of Urban Affairs
- Open Government
- Faith and Neighborhood Partnerships
- Social Innovation and Civic Participation
- US Trade Representative
- Office National Drug Control Policy