Asian and Pacific Islander Organizations Nationwide Launch 'Civic Action Week' Heading Into 2022 Midterms
NEW YORK, October 11, 2022 (Newswire.com) - From Oct. 11-14, 2022, over a dozen Asian and Pacific Islander (API) nonprofits across the country are launching Civic Action Week, organized by Gold House, to encourage voting, philanthropy, and vaccines. The week will highlight national and local resources heading into midterm elections and flu season, from the Filipino Voter Empowerment Project's PSA starring Timothy Granaderos to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' COVID-19 education campaign We Can Do This.
"The pandemic has been particularly hard on many Asians and Pacific Islanders facing increasing socioeconomic challenges. We must mobilize to protect our rights and our health," said Jeremy Tran, COO of Gold House, one of the nonprofits leading Civic Action Week.
Indeed, the collective power of APIs should not be overlooked. Asian American voter turnout surged by 47% nationally and across all presidential battleground states in 2020, becoming the margin of victory in key states like Georgia. Asian Americans also assumed some of the highest national and local offices for the first time — from U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris to Mayors Michelle Wu (Boston), Aftab Pureval (Cincinnati), and Bruce Harrell (Seattle).
These victories did not come easily, however.
Barriers to voting access continue to exist in critical states like Texas, where a recent poll by Asian Texans for Justice showed that 64% of the API electorate are eager to vote.
"South Asians in Texas are up against major obstacles at the ballot box," warns Krisan Swaminathan, Chair of SAAVETX. "Voter suppression laws ensnare our people in antiquated voter registration regulations, complicated ballot access, and stringent voter identification requirements. This directly impacts immigrant communities."
Many API communities have also been facing limited healthcare and financial resources, despite increasing challenges in recent years.
"With the prevalence of chronic illnesses among Pacific Islanders and likeliness of our communities living in multi-family and multi-generational households, prioritizing health in our community today is key to ensuring we aren't one of the hardest hit communities in the next health crisis," Karla Thomas, Deputy Director of EPIC, explains.
But with less than 1% of philanthropic dollars going to API nonprofits, these organizations are working together to empower their communities through creative ways like Civic Action Week.
"Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders have faced many challenges over the past few years. But as a community, we did not stay silent," says Kevin Hirano, Director of Operations and Development of APIAVote. "The change we want and need can only happen when we vote and take others with us to the polls."
Visit www.civicactionweek.com for a full list of resources and events.
About Civic Action Week
Civic Action Week is a grassroots effort to empower Asian and Pacific Islanders nationwide with accessible resources on voting, philanthropy, and vaccines. Participating organizations include AALEAD, APIAVote, Asia Services in Action, Asian Texans for Justice, CAUSE, Chinese-American Planning Council, EPIC, HAVEN, SAAVE TX, The SEAD Project, and VAYLA New Orleans.
Source: Gold House