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OCA Reflects on Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

Friday, May 30, 2014   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Kham Moua
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OCA Reflects on Asian Pacific American Heritage Month


May 30, 2014                               


Dear Advocates,                                                                                           


As Asian Pacific American Heritage Month (APAHM) draws to a close, we reflect back on this month and its significance to OCA, our membership, and our communities. APAHM started from the need to recognize and celebrate the cultures, histories, and contributions of Asian Pacific American (APA) communities. Our communities’ collective contributions are interwoven with the fabric of American livelihood and history: from the first Filipinos to arrive on American soil, to the Chinese laborers who laid the foundation of the gateway to the West, to the Hmong who were recruited into the American forces during the Vietnam War. Despite the hardships and continued struggles of many within our community, APAs have become an integral part of America.


APAHM is an opportunity for us to not only celebrate our people but also recognize the adversities endured by our communities. As one of the first national organizations representing APAs, we have worked tirelessly to address that duality. There is still much needed progress, so we continue to advocate for some of the most important issues to our community. Here are a few highlights from this month:

  • The elimination of hazing and bullying in the military remains one of OCA’s primary policy areas. On May 17th, the OCA – New York Chapter unveiled Private Danny Chen Way, a tribute to Private Danny Chen, an Asian American soldier who died in 2011 of non-combat injuries after being hazed and bullied by his superiors.
  • Through the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (WHIAAPI), OCA and other national APA organizations met with Secretary of Education Arne Duncan to advocate for education reform on May 4th.
  • Immigration reform continues to be a priority for OCA. WHIAPPI assisted OCA and other national APA organizations to organize a roundtable with Deputy Secretary Mayorkas of the Department of Homeland Security to discuss fair and humane immigration reform.
It is our hope that one day, APAHM will no longer be necessary to celebrate and remember our communities’ diverse cultures, histories, and contributions - but rather the history of the APA community will be embedded into every classroom across the country.


As we continue our mission of advancing the social, political, and economic well-being of Asian Pacific Americans, we hope you will join our efforts by making a gift toward our advocacy work today. Through your generosity, OCA can continue to address key issues like hazing/bullying in the armed forces, education reform, and fair and humane immigration reform – bringing equity and equality to all APAs. Making a gift is quick and easy on our secure giving page; and we hope you will take a moment to learn more about our work by exploring our website and following us on social media.

Thank you for your continued support as we advocate for APAs across the United States.


Sharon M. Wong                                                          


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