Across the Board

APAs, 12% and growing, rally for a fair budget

On Wed. Feb. 16th, 150 members of a coalition representing 40 Asian American organizations and Council Members Daniel Dromm and Margaret Chin gathered in front of the steps of City Hall to urge the Mayor to recognize the needs to support Asian Pacific American organizations. The 12% and Growing Coalition, remind the Mayor that although APAs make up of 12% of New York City’s population, they are only allocated 1% of the total funding. Specifically, the APA community receives 0.24% of the City’s social service contract dollars and 0.38% of the City’s foundation grant dollars. 

The Coalition’s Statement of Principles cites some shocking statistics. Of 960,000 APAs living in NYC:

  • 73% of Asian Pacific Americans are foreign-born. 
  • Asian Pacific Americans have the highest rate (28%) of linguistic isolation, meaning that no one over the age of 14 in a household speaks English well.
  • Asian Pacific Americans have the second highest rate of poverty (25.9%). 
  • 1 out of 4 Asian Pacific Americans 25 years and older do not have a high school diploma. 
  • 1 out of 3 Asian Pacific American high school students do not graduate on time or at all. 

In their statement, the Coalition urges the City and the State to take into account the economic recession’s effects on the most vulnerable Asian American communities, as well as the importance of funding community based organizations that provide essential community support, e.g. social services and immigrant services, for Asian Pacific Americans. 

For more about the press release for the rally, check this blog by the YWCA of Queens New York, one of the coalition members. 

(Side) Notes:
This article by Shuang Liu originally appeared in Chinese-language newspaper, the World Journal (世界日報) on Feb. 18th. It was translated on Feb. 24th by Connie Yik Kong of the New York Community Media Alliance (NYCMA). Interestingly enough, I could not find coverage about this rally in the New York Times. Instead, the NYCMA’s translation of World Journal really shows me the importance of ethnic media in our APA community and the necessity of translating different forms of ethnic media for a broader audience!

Thanks to MS for sharing this article.

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